Research Article

Knowledge sharing in collaborative new product development: a study of grey box supplier involvement configuration

Matheus Kleber; Néstor Fabián Ayala; Marie-Anne Le Dain; Érico Marcon; Alejandro Germán Frank

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Abstract: Paper aims: To shed light on how knowledge is shared between companies during a collaborative new product development (NPD) process.

Originality: It is the first study of different knowledge sharing levels for each stage of the NPD process in an inter-organizational context.

Research method: A research framework was created based on the literature. Guided by this framework, an in-depth case study was performed in a multinational company analyzing the knowledge sharing with the company’s supplier during a collaborative NPD process.

Main findings: Different levels of knowledge sharing were found at each stage of the NPD process.

Implications for theory and practice: The results complement previous works demonstrating that this phenomenon should not be considered as a binary state. By clearly presenting how knowledge sharing occurs at each phase of the NPD process, managers can be prepared and correctly implement tools to support NPD teams from both buyer and supplier companies.


New product development, Knowledge management, Knowledge sharing, Supplier involvement, Grey box


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