Dynamic Capabilities

Zollo, M. and Winter, S.G. (2002). Deliberate learning and the evolution of dynamic capabilities. Organization Science, 13, pp. 339–351.

This paper investigates the mechanisms through which orga-nizations develop dynamic capabilities, defined as routinized activities directed to the development and adaptation of operating routines. It addresses the role of (1) experience accumulation, (2) knowledge articulation, and (3) knowledge codification processes in the evolution of dynamic, as well as operational, routines. The argument is made that dynamic capabilities are shaped by the coevolution of these learning mechanisms. At any point in time, firms adopt a mix of learning behaviors constituted by a semiautomatic accumulation of experience and by deliberate investments in knowledge articulation and codification activities. The relative effectiveness of these capability-building mechanisms is analyzed here as contingent upon selected features of the task to be learned, such as its frequency, homogeneity, and degree of causal ambiguity. Testable hypotheses about these effects are derived. Somewhat counterintuitive implications of the analysis include the relatively superior effectiveness of highly deliberate learning processes such as knowledge codification at lower levels of frequency and homogeneity of the organizational task, in contrast with common managerial practice.

See also Wikipedia

In organizational theory, dynamic capability is the capability of an organization to purposefully adapt an organization’s resource base. The concept is defined by Teece et al. (1997) as “the firm’s ability to integrate, build, and reconfigure internal and external competences to address rapidly changing environments.”[1]
The term is often used in the plural form, dynamic capabilities, emphasizing that the ability to react adequately and timely to external changes requires a combination of multiple capabilities.

Building Dynamic Capabilities: Innovation Driven by Individual-, Firm-, and Network-Level Effects

Yeah, Absorptive capacity and all that malarkey. And learning to learn, valuing it. Instead of marches and vigils and low-cost activity….

See also operational capabilities

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