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date: 22 March 2019

Abstract and Keywords

It is difficult to understand the form, management, markets, and ultimately the services produced by PSFs without analysis of the characteristics of knowledge and learning in such organizations. This chapter highlights how three fundamental lines of research about PSFs are intimately related to the key characteristics of knowledge and learning in such organizations: (a) organizational form, management, and governance, (b) the roles and effects of knowledge networking via databases versus knowing in practice through communities, and (c) the jurisdiction of a firm and claims about exclusive rights over a market. These areas of research are all contested domains in terms of optimum modes of organizing and trajectories of change due to the ambiguous and heterogeneous nature of knowledge. The chapter frames key future research questions which relate primarily to the constant dynamics that define both the nature of knowledge in PSFs, and their influence on questions of organization and management.

Keywords: knowledge, learning, professional service firms, communities of practice, organizations, management

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