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Learning to grow – Empirical analysis of dynamic capabilities of SMEs in Brazil. André Francisco Wolf.

Learning to grow – Empirical analysis of dynamic capabilities of SMEs in Brazil. André Francisco Wolf.

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Published by Dynamic SME
Learning to grow – Empirical analysis of dynamic capabilities of SMEs in Brazil. André Francisco Wolf.
Learning to grow – Empirical analysis of dynamic capabilities of SMEs in Brazil. André Francisco Wolf.

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Published by: Dynamic SME on Mar 07, 2012
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A thesis submitted to the Wiesbaden Business School infulfillment for the degree of Master of ArtsinInternational Business Administrationof University of Applied Sciences Wiesbaden(Hochschule RheinMain)
Learning to grow
 Empirical analysis of dynamiccapabilities of SMEs in Brazil
 Prof. Dr. Klaus North
 Prof. Dr. Franz Giesel
Submitted by:
 André Francisco Wolf Auf der Unterheide 1565549 LimburgWiesbaden, October 15, 2011
Executive Summary I
Executive Summary
This thesis is part of a project called “
Sustainable competitiveness of SMEs inturbulent economic and social environments - a network approach
” or “dynamicSME” as short version. The project tries to
combine European innovation andorganizational learning models with Latin American survival strategies inturbulent economies.Dynamic SME is a four year project which started in April this year with supportof Marie Curie International Research Staff Exchange Scheme Fellowship withinthe seventh European Community Framework Programme. On the one hand theproject has the objective to strengthen research partnerships through staff exchanges and networking activities between two European researchorganizations from Germany, Hochschule RheinMain, and Spain, UniversidasAutónoma de Madrid, and two Latin American research organizations fromBrazil, Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina, and Argentina, UniversidadNacional de Rosario. On the other hand it has the scientific objective to create aco-evolvement process towards a successful management model for SMEs thatcombines the European innovation and organizational learning model with LatinAmerican survival strategies in turbulent economies.European universities already have experience in cooperation with SMEs. One
example is the project “learning to grow” (“
Wachstum lernen - lernend wachsen
initiated by Professor Klaus North from Hochschule RheinMain in cooperationwith RKW Deutschland. The method developed for
“learning to grow”
is thebasis for this thesis. European approaches have, however, not been tested inturbulent economic environments.
In the course of “
dynamic SME
the method of the project
to grow
,which has already proved being successful in Germany, will be tested in turbulentmarkets such as in Argentina and Brazil to find out to what extent it is applicableand what can be learned with the turbulent conditions in Latin America.
Executive Summary II
Actually the diagnosis done for fifteen companies in this thesis is the first of sevensteps for managing growth.
Seven steps for managing growth
Source: cf. Hardwig et al. 2011, p 139
The diagnoses of the fifteen companies interviewed for this thesis led to thefollowing conclusions: In general the companies had very interesting processesand routines to move the levers of the growth-wheel. Many examples given in theinterviews with the executives disclosed highly developed innovation andknowledge management capabilities. E.g. the many processes to identifyopportunities for growth with the help of external and internal parties described inthe analysis of questions one and two.But there are problems too. The differentiation practiced by many of the fifteenSMEs between white and blue-collar workers for instance. Furthermore, somecompanies act very informal without any routines and structures.The analysis of different classifications of the fifteen SMEs showed that a higherlevel of innovativeness led to a higher mean value of the self-assessment. That

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