Productive organizational energy mediates the impact of organizational structure on absorptive capacity

Andreas Alexiou, Saeed Khanaga, Michaéla C. Schippers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


The ability of an organization to cope with radical technological change is regarded to be heavily dependent on its ability to absorb and apply knowledge from its environment. This study investigates the role of organizational structure in driving absorptive capacity and uncovers the role of the emergent phenomenon of organizational energy as the enabler of this relationship. A field study was conducted among firms that are challenged by the disruptive nature of Cloud computing. Our results show that organizational design affects the degree of mobilization of an organization's affective, cognitive and behavioral resources, which in turn influence the effectiveness of learning processes related to the absorption and exchange of knowledge within the organization. Furthermore, they reveal the positive relationship between the enactment of absorptive capacity and the successful adoption of Cloud technology for incumbent firms. The findings contribute to our understanding of the micro-foundations of absorptive capacity and how positive organizational phenomena facilitate effective adoption and implementation of emerging technologies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155-172
JournalLong Range Planning
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Externally publishedYes


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