Tepper School of Business
Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
NBER Working Papers and Publications
|November 2013||Learning by Doing in a Multi-Product Manufacturing Environment: Product Variety, Customizations, and Overlapping Product Generations|
with Carolyn D. Egelman, Dennis Epple, Erica R.H. Fuchs: w19674
Extending research on organizational learning to multi-product environments is of particular importance given that the vast majority of products are manufactured in such environments. We investigate learning in a multi-product facility drawing on exceptionally rich data for a manufacturing firm that is a leading producer of high technology components. Weekly data for 10 years from the firm's production and human resource tracking systems are augmented by surveys of managers and engineers and by extensive first-hand observation. We find that productivity improves when multiple generations of the firm's primary product family are produced concurrently, reflecting the firm's ability to augment and transfer knowledge from older to newer product generations. No significant transfer of knowledge...
Published: Learning by Doing in Multiproduct Manufacturing: Variety, Customizations, and Overlapping Product Generations Carolyn D. Egelman, Dennis Epple, Linda Argote, and Erica R. H. Fuchs Management Science 201763:2 , 405-423