Is it better to be a generalist or a specialist?


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Title Is it better to be a generalist or a specialist?
Period 01 / 2010 - 01 / 2014
Status Current
Dissertation Yes
Research number OND1342163
Data Supplier Website ERIM


The relationship between knowledge and job performance has predominantly been studied through research on expertise. To move beyond expertise, the concept knowledge density is introduced, which indicates the connectedness of a person s areas of knowing. This PhD revolves around developing this concept in a conceptual paper and testing (part of) the propositions at the team-level. Specifically, the relationships are tested in collaborations between academics, data obtained from the ISI Web of Knowledge database, and in Top Management teams of publicly traded companies, data obtained through CV analysis. After four years, we hope to be able to answer the question: When is it better to be a specialist or a generalist?

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Supervisor Prof.dr. D.L. van Knippenberg
Project leader Dr. W. Felps
Doctoral/PhD student M.E. Schouten (MSc)

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