== Technical exchanges (alpha = 0.83) ==
=== Definition ===
Technical exchanges are understood as small-scale exchanges of technical information.
=== Items ===
Our engineers and sales staff have a close relationship with our partner’s staff.
In the development process, direction of communication is bilateral rather than unilateral.
Frequent contact between our partner and our engineers is important.
Through informal discussion, our partner often communicates important engineering information to us.
Communication with our partner often begins to occur earlier in the development process.
Informal communications often reduce lead time in the development process.
=== Source ===
Kotabe et al. (2002): Gaining from Vertical Partnerships: Knowledge Transfer, Relationship Duration, and Supplier Performance Improvement in the U.S. and Japanese Automotive Industries. Strategic Management Journal, Vol. 24, No. 4, pp. 293–316
=== Comments ===
The authors remarked that a potential issue with the last item is "that it mentions both a practice and an outcome". The unit of analysis remains unclear; e.g., in some items it seems to be the inter-organizational level, whereas in some items it seems to be the staff/staff level. Do items containing words like "engineering" and "development" necessarily measure the exchange of "technical information"?