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Remembrance of Things Past? The Dynamics of Organizational Forgetting

By Pablo Martin de Holan and Nelson Phillips


How organizations create, transfer, and retain knowledge has been the focus of intensive investigation by management researchers. However, one aspect of the dynamics of knowledge---organizational forgetting---has received comparatively little attention. In this paper, we draw on an exploratory, multiple-case study of learning in international strategic alliances to explore how and why organizations forget. Based on our case study, we develop a theory of organizational forgetting, discuss the role of forgetting in the dynamics of organizational knowledge, and present a typology of types of organizational forgetting.organizational learning, organizational forgetting, unlearning, knowledge management

DOI identifier: 10.1287/mnsc.1040.0273
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