An important source for a firm’s competitive advantage is its external knowledge-related relationships. Absorptive capability is a firm’s ability to recognize the value of new, external information, assimilate it, and apply it to commercial ends. It pertains to knowledge creation and utilization that enhances a firm’s ability to gain and sustain a competitive advantage. Four capabilities compose a firm’s absorptive capacity: acquisition, assimilation, transformation, and exploitation. This paper focuses acquisition, which is a firm’s capability to identify and acquire external information and knowledge. Information and communication technologies (ICT) and Knowledge Management Systems (KMS) can play an important role in inter-organizational knowledge processes and flows. The paper discusses how ICT and KMS can be used to enhance knowledge acquisition. The core business process used for illustration is (new) product development.
Carlsson, Sven A., "Enhancing Product Development Through ICT Based Relationships with Customers and Consumers" (2004). ECIS 2004 Proceedings. 45.