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Sustainable change: knowledge absorption as a factor of absorptive capacity theory among green industry consultants




Badding, Sarah, author
Sarkar, Ajoy K., advisor
Leigh, Katharine E., advisor
Venneberg, Donald L., committee member

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Researchers and practitioners have been interested in organizational learning as a means to improve performance (Gilley, Dean, & Bierema, 2001; Senge, 1990). The diversity of individuals comprising the context of an organization requires response to change to continue competitive organizational development. When influences and triggers pressure an organization to change, a niche is created for the external consultant. Consultants assist organizations to become more conscious of their own capabilities to successfully address, acknowledge, and use knowledge from internal and external environments. The purpose of this study is to assess the use of knowledge types identified within ACAP theory by consultants guiding clients on a path toward sustainable change. This study enhances existing research regarding absorptive capacity by looking for evidence of new knowledge through the lens of sustainable change. The research goal is to ascertain the active use of key factors of knowledge absorption by green consultants. Findings of this study support a relationship among the consultant's role and the client's capabilities. Utilizing sustainable change strategies and the consultant's complex set of skills the consultant works with a client exhibiting existing strategies supportive of sustainable change. Determining the types of knowledge already present within the organization, green consultant's focus on a customized approach offered through tactics for sustainable change to achieve organizational objectives creating lasting and sustainable change.


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knowledge absorption
sustainable change
organizational learning
absorptive capacity
green consultants
organizational change


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