Organizational learning and product innovation are two important approaches to improve product quality. Various dimensions of them may have different effects on product quality, which has received less attention from the research community. More specifically, the role of organizational learning has not been fully addressed in quality management empirical studies. To address this gap we develop a path model incorporating explorative learning, exploitative learning, product innovativeness for the firm, product innovativeness for the customer, objective quality and subjective quality. In this paper, we put emphasis on exploring the effects of explorative learning and exploitative learning on the levels of product innovativeness, and the effects of product innovativeness on objective quality and subjective quality. Through theoretical deducting and existing researches concluding, we put forward some propositions about these variables. Finally, to prepare empirical study for the near future, we discuss variable measurement and some other issues about future empirical test. The findings of this research will provide some instructions for firms to adopt product innovation and attain high product quality. © 2009 IEEE.
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