JED, Vol. 18, No.3, December 2016, pp. 64-86
Knowledge Acquisition of Local Managers: Its Antecedents and Effectiveness
Abstract:The objectives of this article are to examine how expatriates and local managers of the
subsidiaries of Multinational Corporations’ (MNCs), or joint ventures, interact to affect local
managers’ learning; and to investigate how local managers’ knowledge acquisition from
expatriates affects their own performance. To achieve those objectives, the research utilises both
quantitative and qualitative exploratory approaches. Data were collected from surveys and indepth
interviews at 109 international joint ventures in Vietnam, including dyadic data from 68
local manager-expatriate duos. Through the survey, this research confirms the hypothesis that
expatriation fosters tacit knowledge transfer. It also suggests that receivers have a stronger
impact on knowledge acquisition than providers. In addition, we find that among various types
of knowledge being transferred in expatriate-local manager interactions, only ‘acquired tacit
professional’ knowledge affects local managers’ performance.
Keywords:Expatriates; local managers; knowledge acquisition; Vietnam; cross-culture management; knowledge transfer.