When do product architectures mirror organisational architectures? The combined role of product complexity and the rate of technological change

Nicholas Burton, Peter Galvin

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    18 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    In the modularity literature, an architectural decomposition and ‘mirroring’ between task boundaries, knowledge boundaries, and firm boundaries has been suggested as a way to enhance managerial efficiency and as a source of potential strategic advantage. Despite its intuitive appeal, empirical support for ‘mirroring’ is significant but mixed. In this paper, we utilise an industrial economics and knowledge-based perspective to hypothesise how the combined effects of product architecture type, product complexity and the rate of product component change may influence task, knowledge and firm boundaries and hence be associated with either phases of mirroring or non-mirroring (‘misting’). We suggest that whether mirroring or misting is an efficient strategic choice is influenced by the characteristics of both the product architecture and the rate of technological change at the product component level, and changes across time as products evolve. Our framework helps to reconcile existing mixed evidence and provides the foundation for further empirical research.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1057-1069
    Number of pages13
    JournalTechnology Analysis & Strategic Management
    Volume30
    Issue number9
    Early online date15 Feb 2018
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2 Sept 2018

    Fingerprint

    Dive into the research topics of 'When do product architectures mirror organisational architectures? The combined role of product complexity and the rate of technological change'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this