Explaining process and performance in the co-production of knowledge: a comparative analysis of collaborative research projects

Louise Knight, Andrew Pettigrew

Research output: Unpublished contribution to conferenceUnpublished Conference Paperpeer-review


Despite considerable and growing interest in the subject of academic researchers and practising managers jointly generating knowledge (which we term ‘co-production’), our searches of management literature revealed few articles based on primary data or multiple cases. Given the increasing commitment to co-production by academics, managers and those
funding research, it seems important to strengthen the evidence base about practice and performance in co-production. Literature on collaborative research was reviewed to develop a framework to structure the analysis of this data and relate findings to the limited body of prior research on collaborative research practice and performance. This paper presents empirical data from four completed, large scale co-production projects.
Despite major differences between the cases, we find that the key success factors and the indicators of performances are remarkably similar. We demonstrate many, complex influences between factors, between outcomes, and between factors and outcomes, and discuss the features that are distinctive to co-production.
Our empirical findings are broadly consonant with prior literature, but go further in trying to understand success factors’ consequences for performance. A second contribution of this paper is the development of a conceptually and methodologically rigorous process for investigating collaborative research, linking process and performance. The paper closes with discussion of the study’s limitations and opportunities for further research.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2007
Event3rd organization studies summer workshop - Rethymno, Crete, Greece
Duration: 7 Jun 20079 Jun 2007


Conference3rd organization studies summer workshop
CityRethymno, Crete

Bibliographical note

June 7-9


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