Knowledge Transfer Across Types of Assignments: Case study of an International Oil Company

Amal. M. Jawad


The principal objective of this paper is to explore how using different sorts of international assignments (short-term expatriation, long-term expatriation, short-term inpatriation) enable the headquarters (HQ) and ancillary branches to transfer an assortment of knowledge types (procedural, declarative, axiomatic, and relational knowledge) from the HQ to their ancillaries, through the period of assignment. The current study used a qualitative approach based on the data collection strategy of semi-structured interviews with 20 partakers with standings of international assignment (IA). The content analysis methodology was managed to analyze and codify the interviews. The findings reveal that every single kind of assignment acts as a special knowledge transfer situation. The principal benefaction of our study is that it delivered a more precise understanding of international assignments as knowledge transfer situations than any research in precedence. While the contributions of this study have been salient, certain limitations pave the way for extensive research possibilities. To begin with, this paper lays emphasis on a large organisation in the Oil and Gas sector in three countries, UK (the HQ), Oman and UAE, which limits generalization of the findings. The paper reviews the implications of selecting IA to transfer the various types of knowledge. We achieve this by distinguishing the knowledge convey role of international assignments across different types of assignments, types of knowledge, and the direction and timing of knowledge transfer through or following the international assignment. First this paper is necessary to analyze the success of knowledge transfer and IA and ascertain their application. To the best of our knowledge, this research one of the rare studies that include the engineer’s perspective in the global Oil and Gas sector. This umbrella approach aids in better understanding IA and knowledge transfer.

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