Zahra and George (2002) suggested a reconceptualization of the absorptive capacity construct in order to reduce ambiguity in empirical studies. A rereading of the seminal Cohen and Levinthal (1990) article in light of current research on learning and innovation directs our attention to serious ambiguities and omissions in Zahra and George's reconceptualization. We suggest a reintroduction of "recognizing the value," an alternative understanding of "transformation," a clarification of "potential absorptive capacity," an elaboration of the impact of socialization mechanisms, an investigation of the role of "power relationships," and an inclusion of feedback loops in a dynamic model of absorptive capacity. Copyright of the Academy of Management, all rights reserved.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Business, Management and Accounting(all)
- Strategy and Management
- Management of Technology and Innovation