Empowerment, creativity, and organizational memory are constructs that have been researched in MIS. While each construct has received individual attention, we have found relatively little research linking them. One of the major edicts of empowerment is delegation of decision making authority to lower-level employees. Increased authority allows employees more freedom to be creative. However, if creative thought is generated but not captured, innovative ideas may be lost. Organizational memory can capture creative ideas as they are generated so that empowered teams can draw upon positive creative experiences.
We developed a theoretical model to illuminate the relationships between organizational memory, worker empowerment, and creativity. The model portrays the linkages between empowerment and creativity, creativity and organizational memory, and organizational memory and empowerment. The model was developed based on the literature in each respective area and an interview-based study concerning “empowered” systems development project teams and organizational memory. Analysis of the interview data revealed that empowered workers generate creative solutions to problems. However, creative solutions can only be used for future projects if they are somehow recorded into organizational memory. Organizations that empowered their workforce and embraced creativity reported increased customer satisfaction, waste reduction, and some quality gains. In contrast, those that did not empower reported little or no change. Organizations that recorded creative solutions to problems believe that retrieval of this information could be potentially useful for future projects. Potential challenges faced by organizations classified into each cell are also presented. This classification scheme should prove useful as a guide to organizations examining the potential benefits and pitfalls of worker empowerment and organizational memory.
Does the need for sustainable development hinder businesses' ability to create value? Is firms' competitiveness negatively affected by considering that need? Evidence that many of today's economic development practices are causing negative environmental and social side-effects continues to pile up. Yet to change the belief that markets and prices by themselves can, must and will take care of any negative impact that companies have on society is a tough objective. To prove that it is possible to do well by doing right, and that, in the long term, the only way to do well is by doing right, is a Herculean task. The purpose of this paper is to contribute to this task. Since the core idea of the paper relates to the role of business in society at large, first of all the authors quickly review the literature concerning this issue. Then, drawing on the resource-based view of the firm and sustainable development literature, the paper presents a proposal for a dynamic and sustainable view of the firm, explaining the normative and instrumental character of its foundations. It shows how sustainable development changes the competitive landscape and in so doing influences the way in which companies develop their resources, capabilities and activities, fostering the persistence of competitive advantages based on knowledge and innovation. The authors conclude by highlighting the changes in corporate governance which inherently come with this new view of the firm.
This paper presents the results of a study conducted in manufacturing firms operating in the electrical and electronic sectors in Quebec. It investigates the extent to which environmental concerns are integrated into corporate strategy and the entire product development stages. Special attention is paid to the underlying decision process and the benefits derived from being green.
Un �tude conduite aupr�s des entreprises qu�b�coises oeuvrant dans les secteur �lectrique et �lectronique permet d'�valuer le niveau d'int�gration des pr�occupations environnementales dans la strat�gie corporative et dans les diff�rentes phases du cycle de d�veloppement des produits. Les r�sultats de l'�tude analysent les processus d�cisionnels sous-jacents ainsi que les b�n�fices encourus par les entreprises qui ont privil�gi� une strat�gie environnementale plus intense.
This article presents a propulsion model of creative leadership. First, it introduces some general issues in the nature of creative leadership. Then, it presents the propulsion model. Creative leadership can be of three general kinds—leadership that accepts existing ways of doing things, leadership that challenges existing ways of doing things, and leadership that synthesizes different existing ways of doing things. Within these three general kinds of leadership are eight specific types. Finally, the article draws some conclusions and notes other ways of dividing up types of creative leadership.
nal responses to such situations predominantly involve trade–off and compromise. This either/or thinking style almost invariably leads to lose–lose outcomes. This in turn despite the inordinate amount of literature and methodology available for ‘optimising’ those outcomes. Highly fashionable talk of ‘third ways’ or ‘win–win’ or ‘A and B’ solutions are an emerging counter to such thinking. Unfortunately, the literature–base for such approaches is largely non–existent, and hence win–win remains as precisely fashionable talk to most observers. This paper discusses the positive role TRIZ may be expected to play in beginning the task of turning win–win from nice idea to practical reality. Mass–customization is used as an exemplar contradiction problem.
Creativity has been a relatively new research area in computer science and especially in the field of human–computer interaction, as compared to how this subject has been well established in the areas of psychology, social science and management science. This special section of Creativity and Innovation Management on Creativity and Technology gives us the opportunity to examine three evolutions of research in the field of computer support for creativity, from both a research and a practical perspective. First, collecting empirical evidence is needed to embrace different aspects of creativity with multiple methods that bridge the disciplines of com- puter science, human–computer interaction (HCI), ergonomics and psychology. Second, evaluation approaches are conceptualizing computers as tools and/or computers as (digital) spaces. Third, collaborative and social aspects should be also considered when studying creativity in order to get a more ecological picture of variables that practically affect creative processes as well as creative outcomes.
The case documents an eventful year in the history of 3M, a company that until November 1995 had been considered a paragon of corporate consistency. The particular emphasis of this case is on the spin-off or demerger of 3M's data storage and imaging businesses into a new company called Imation. Although the decision to demerge was taken in a global context, the detailed comments and reflections of participants involved in this process are drawn from Europe and, in particular, from the UK. The case makes extensive use of quotes from these managers in order to bring to life decisions and events. This case explores the strategy behind 3M's decision to demerge, and considers the myriad of structural and cultural issues arising from the decision. Finally, the case examines the results of the demerger and assesses the position of the fledgling company.
This paper explores industry convergence and its implications for the front end of innovation. Conventional practice of idea generation and selection seems to be difficult in times of convergence, since actors face new knowledge and competencies owned in different industries. Given these particularities of industry convergence, this paper analyses decision processes at the front end of 54 R&D projects by using a mixed-method research design. Findings indicate that there are different approaches of how firms engage in innovation in industry convergence. A central implication is the need to differentiate between the market and technological side of a firm's absorptive capacity.
This article examines the motivations which induce academic researchers to found their own business and reports on the advantages and disadvantages that such an entrepreneurial form presents for an efficient transfer of creativity and innovation from public research laboratories to the marketplace. In the Italian situation it shows that academic spin-offs can be very efficient in doing this although there are specific and crucial moments which generate tension within the first stages of the firm's life cycle.
We relate an advertising agency's reputation for creativity to its ability to retain client loyalty. The data base consists of ten years of UK data on account switching trends and comprises 1,145 advertising accounts and 13 variables. The analysis identifies three agency creativity variables, three client organisation variables and three account-specific variables as fundamental factors for explaining the switching behaviour of clients. “Creative” agencies are found to be more successful at retaining clients, individual accounts, and portfolios of accounts.
It is a necessary disclaimer that you know that I am not a historian. What I share with you might suffer in terms of preciseness of order and even content. I may omit certain events that others would have included. Nevertheless, I offer thoughts that I hope will add to perspective. That is one of my objectives. In addition, it is my intent to provide a stimulus for other roamings of the Mind.
This paper questions the nature of organizational commitment in the light of contemporary competitive environments, the emergence of human resource management practices and reshaped employee-organization linkages. Qualitative research among organizational professionals suggests that the classical view of organizational commitment as a positive attitudinal state has been overtaken by a more complex view that embraces task-related goal congruence, energies directed at achieving outcomes and creative and innovative behaviours in the workplace. Stepwise regression analysis was used to examine the predictors of goal congruence, achievement and innovative behaviours in a sample of over 600 chemists and accountants.
Leaders in R&D functions today face increasingly challenging environments in which to foster creativity and promote innovation. While organizational systems and management processes impact productivity, relationships between and among scientists and engineers must be nurtured to sustain competitive advantage. Initiating conversations about organizational dynamics that are otherwise difficult for R&D professionals is a critical task of leaders. This paper, based on practitioner work in the field, identifies four domains of inquiry and action in which focused dialogue and leadership initiative promises more engaged and motivated professionals: (1) pacing productivity; (2) capitalizing on failure; (3) managing connections; and (4) paying the price. As a result of working intentionally in these domains, leaders in R&D make it possible for their organizations to work explicitly with the ‘Politics of Creativity™’ in a way that encourages trust and fosters more creativity.
The primary aim of this research is to explore innovation activities and ascertain the relationships between these activities and growth performance of SMEs in the Tanzanian manufacturing sector. The applied model has been derived from international studies of innovation. A survey of SMEs combined with in-depth case studies was made to study innovation practices of SMEs in the Tanzanian manufacturing sector. The results of this survey are used to compare the situation with findings of previous research. An increased level of applied change is associated with innovating SMEs, and a positive relationship between innovativeness in the SMEs with growth performance could be established. Based on the comparison of the results, recommendations are made for stimulating innovation.
In the aerospace industry competitive advantage is searched through product innovation. This paper sets out to explore the effects that relationship development in the commercial aerospace supply chains have on innovation and competitive advantage. A perspective of supply chains as complex activity networks is used for data analysis based on in-depth interviews in a global setting. Applying these concepts of supply chains as the interaction of multiple work activities assists in comprehending the forces of change. The processes of change are characterized by expansive learning processes of creating instruments for initializing, developing and sustaining these relationships. These processes take place in a terrain of complex power exercises. The long-term effects are totally dependent on nurturing the relationships. The findings may be useful to practitioners in understanding how implementation of successful supply chain changes may come about. It promotes risk-sharing partnerships as instruments for innovation. The paper provides evidence of changing relationships in commercial aerospace supply chains.
The purpose of this paper is to explore the potential impact of Kirton's Adaption-Innovation Theory on our thinking about creativity, and consequently on the practices of researchers and trainers in this field. That people differ in their degree or level of creativity has long been established. Kirton's work asserts that people also differ in the manner in which they express their creativity—their style, and the KAI (the Kirton Adaption-Innovation Inventory) measures a person's preferred style. In the literature, Style and Level of creativity are argued (and mostly shown) to be independent. It follows from this that Adaptors and Innovators are creative (and uncreative) in different ways. It is suggested that much of the work in the creativity field has focused on the Innovative style of creativity. This paper describes research identifying differences in how Adaptors and Innovators view their creative products, looks at some possible implications for training, explores differences in preferred organisational climate between Adaptors and Innovators, and suggests a style-neutral definition of creativity.
A combination of chronological compression and coordination of serial production has distinguished global adjustment in Korean textiles. Compression denotes the rapid progression from origins to maturity and then decline in what has become one of the world’s leading textile manufacturing and exporting nations. One consequence of rapid development has been inconsistencies in the formation of independent industry institutions necessary for adjustment, such as industry associations.
Coordination denotes matching supply and demand along a long domestic line of production for export. This line stretches from upstream synthetics and spinners, all the way down to fashion and garments. Three distinct patterns of coordination have dominated the Korean production line. 1) Intra-firm coordination within textile chaebol such as Kabool, Kolon, or Tongkook demand extensive investments upstream and downstream, but permit economies of scale and scope, and facilitate planning and quality control. 2) Inter-firm coordination by the Korean Federation of Textile Industries [KOFOTI] mobilizes state and industry support for extending and refocusing the production line, but remains hampered by excessive competition within the industry, and by conflicting demands between smaller and larger producers. 3) Industry-level supervision of the production line through state control of quotas, trade relations, prices, labor, and on raw material imports, as well as through macrolevel state controls in finance and trade.
This paper focuses on the role of associations in global adjustment. Three levels of co-ordination were critical in addressing the market imperfections of a fast-growing industry, particularly in finance and in balancing production for domestic and foreign markets until recently. I conclude that without a greater role for industry associations in the face of state withdrawal from industry-level coordination, contention rather than productive competition will hamper adjustment along South Korea’s long production line.
The Alignment Conference is a process anchored in three components that are each significant and effective in their individual application. Implementation of this integrated approach addresses the strategic concerns of key organizational stakeholders, allowing them to reach new agreements about what they will do and how they will do it, relative to the organization’s core organizational competencies. It can be a particularly useful process in helping staff change–agents help senior leaders and line managers understand that the human side of the equation is equally important as the technical side, and provides a technology that allows the social side to address business results and processes, for current and future conditions.
Part of the advantages of using open innovation (compared to closed innovation) in corporate venturing can be explained by applying the real options approach. Open innovation in risk-laden activities such as corporate venturing has the following advantages: (i) benefits from early involvement in new technologies or business opportunities; (ii) delayed financial commitment; (iii) early exits reducing the downward losses; and (iv) delayed exit in case it spins off a venture. We furthermore argue that these benefits do not automatically materialize. Innovative firms have to learn new skills and routines to develop the full ‘real option’ potential of open innovation practices.
This paper explores the contribution of global advertising services to the creation and dissemination of knowledge through an examination of their role in knowledge systems at a national and international level. The aim is not only to gain an understanding of global advertising services as bridges between national knowledge systems but also to examine how such services shape the institutions that constitute a knowledge system. In this way, an appreciation of the contribution of advertising services, and knowledge intensive services (KIBS) more generally, to the knowledge creation and distribution process will be developed.
The potential contribution of an analytic hierarchy process (AHP) for enhancing the creative brief within advertising is discussed. AHP software used as a group decision support system (GDSS) can facilitate the creative process by encouraging the generation of ideas. The structuring stage facilitates the sorting of those ideas in to a coherent decision model that represents all alternatives, providing focus and relevance. Structuring and the evaluation stage encourage the blending of rational and intuitive thought. Finally, additional facilities allow the advertiser to reflect and revise their decisions. Overall, it would appear the technique has much potential for managing creativity.
Recent research suggests that implementing information systems presents considerable difficulties and that many implementations are total or partial failures. This paper argues that what both practitioners and students require are richer and more acceptable models of information systems implementation. Accordingly, case study data concerning the introduction of manufacturing resource planning (MRP II) are used to illustrate five patterns of behaviour (rites) which capture important social actions; and four components of changing psychological orientation. It is argued that appreciation of the rites and psychological developments identified here will support effective change programmes. Guidelines based on our model are provided for practitioners.
The phenomenon of demand for novelty is defined and explored as a unique and under-examined aspect of certain markets. Demand for novelty is the portion of demand not explained by practical utility or marketing effects – it is the demand for the new and unique. We explore markets characterized by high demand for novelty and how they differ from typical markets. Primarily, this involves the central role of novelty in the product or service value proposition as well as rapid growth rates and product or service obsolescence. Within this context, we consider the dynamics of innovating and imitating and suggest several ways that first mover competition is unique in markets with high demand for novelty. From the perspective of the knowledge-based theory of the firm, we consider the implications of organizational learning and knowledge and decision making as they relate to new product development routines, improvisation, and top management team decision making. We conclude by considering several avenues for future empirical research.
Good communication and shared understanding between executive teams are extremely important. Teams have to find ways to present increasing amounts of information to one another effectively. Techniques which help people to make better use of information, help discussion and debate, and aid clarity of communication are invaluable. Computer assisted creativity tools employing graphical representations have much to offer individuals and groups working on problems or trying to structure their thinking. They provide a stimulus which is absent when using conventional thinking. The paper provides a review of a selection of these creativity enhancing tools.
It is often claimed that many of the leading successful products emerge incidentally. It is hardly possible, even in a retrospective examination, to account for such incidents by ideation methods devised to enhance randomness. The present research reviews the criticism raised in past literature claiming that the widespread randomness-enhancing methods, which advocate unbounded ideation, are ill defined; they do not specify the goal, the initial state, the operators, or the constraints of the ideation problem. In contrast, scant attention has been devoted, both in research and practice, to bounded scope ideation methods, which advocate that inventive thinking becomes more productive when the ideation process is channeled into pre-defined routes, particularly, if it follows templates that underlie the internal dynamics of past product-based trends. The present research exemplifies the use of templates in explaining major marketing breakthroughs, outlines the procedures for using component templates, and assesses empirically the value of this approach among practitioners in relevant ideation tasks.
Research institutes mainly engage in product innovation for the purpose of applying, testing and usually also transferring knowledge or technology. Managing product innovation processes in this type of environment leads to various problems with the establishment and managent of alliances and alignment. In this paper a systematic analysis of product innovation at two energy research institutes is presented, paying explicit attention to the strategic alliances in terms of alignment mechanisms. The cases illustrate clearly how the research institutes manage their external networks for product innovation, allowing comparison of the strengths and weaknesses of the two research institutes, and an indication of lessons to be learned from each other. The systematic analysis contributes to the identifying of the appropriate product innovaiton objectives to be pursued through strategic alliances, as well as the determination of suitable alignment mechanisms for product innovation. Lessons learned are presented in the area of context and contingency influences, crossing organizational barriers, differences in culture and the balancing of operational effectiveness and strategic flexibility.
The prime purpose of this article is to identify the differences we expect to find among highly gifted scientists and thus to guide us in supporting and managing their efforts. Differences that are important to this purpose can be grouped into those which describe:
the way in which a person works
the way in which he or she interacts with the environment
the ways in which a manager can both improve the creative person's effectiveness and manage his or her performance.
Japanese companies seem able to gain knowledge from their partners in more efficient ways than their European counterparts. Case examples are given in which the European firm, or the Japanese firm begins in the dominant knowhow position. Other examples of strategic alliances between Japanese small businesses are also cited. A learning model is advanced which illustrates the evolution of power through intra- and inter-firm learning processes. An organizational capacity to enhance systemic learning seems to be the key to successful evolution of the firm.
Our study addresses two main questions: First, what types of alliances do firms tend to create when combining different kinds of resources? Second, what governance mechanisms do firms set up to coordinate and protect resources when they use them for different alliances? We examine 227 alliances between competitors in Asia, North America, and Europe. We first identify two types of alliances: scale alliances in which the partner firms contribute similar resources, and link alliances in which the partners contribute complementary resources. We find that firms contributing R&D and production resources tend to form scale alliances, while firms contributing marketing resources tend to enter into link alliances. We also find that firms are more likely to choose stronger protection mechanisms for link alliances, which create greater appropriation risks, while they tend to seek higher levels of coordination in scale alliances.
The proliferation of corporate strategic alliances is explained by the opportunities this provides for the exchange of knowledge and more rapid learning than any other factor. Exploiting complementarities among products and services, strategic alliances enable value creation by capturing the benefits from leveraging knowledge, and discovering complementarities among technologies, and among the activities of the participants. This paper explores the relevance of factors, which may influence the relationship involving the imbalances of internal tensions and alliance instabilities. It is assumed that the objective in a strategic alliance partnership is to maintain the collaborative relationship and to prevent unplanned alliance dissolution. Factors such as availability of resources, bargaining power, alliance type, alliances with specific goals and stages of industry life cycles, and changing market conditions can influence internal tensions and therefore alliance stability. This article argues that alliance partners should balance the conflicting forces to maintain the collaborative knowledge creating and learning relationship.
Organizing for innovation does not present itself as a straightforward exercise. The complexities entailed when implementing an innovation strategy can be related directly to the multitude of objectives it comprises. Recently, several scholars have advanced the notions of semi- or quasi-structures and ambidextrous organizations to handle these multiple requirements. These organizational forms imply the simultaneous presence of different activities, exhibiting differences in technology and market maturation. As a consequence, financial returns will reflect this diversified resource allocation pattern. Moreover, as higher levels of complexity are being introduced; ambidextrous organizations will encounter additional, organizational, costs. Compared to organizations that focus on the most profitable part of the portfolio, ambidextrous organizations – ceteris paribus – tend to be inferior in terms of financial returns. Within this contribution we explore under which conditions ambidextrous organizations can outperform focused firms; considered a prerequisite for their sustainability. In order to do so, we develop an analytical framework depicting the differential value dynamics, focused and ambidextrous firms can enact. Our findings reveal the relevancy of adopting extended time frames as well as introducing interface management practices aimed at cross-fertilization. Finally, the synergetic potential of (underlying) technologies comes to the forefront as necessary in order for ambidextrous organizations to become sustainable.
The purpose of this paper is to investigate the approach of analogical thinking for product innovation. We collected data on projects from four engineering firms where analogical thinking was successfully applied for the development of breakthrough innovations. Results show that abstracting the problem by in-depth technical and contextual analysis is pivotal when searching for analogical solutions. Furthermore, the chances of identifying highly novel analogous solutions are increased if the problem is abstracted to the level of its structural similarities to other settings. We also found that the identification of structural similarities is supported when firms not only rely on the cognitive abilities of the individual but also employ an active search based on abstract search terms. Based on these insights, we propose a process model for the development of product innovations by means of analogical thinking.
Design activity occurs in many professions, ranging from technical to more artistic domains. Whatever the domain, it is a constant challenge for designers to introduce creativity in each design project they work on and minimize the tendency to repeat familiar design features. The goal of this paper is to present a cognitive approach to design problem solving as well as an experimental study. This study aims at determining whether creative ideas can be enhanced by the presentation of external sources of inspiration. In particular, we analyse the effect of the presentation of different kinds of sources (intra- versus interdomain sources, which are presented as graphical representations or as verbal labels) according to the designers’ level of expertise (lay-designers versus professionals). Results show that it is possible to enhance evocation processes in design, but that it is dependent on both the nature of sources of inspiration and the designers’ level of expertise. Based on these results, we suggest ways for enhancing creative ideas in design tasks.
Research has identified virtual communities as a valuable source of innovation. This study aims to provide an understanding of what makes some end-user communities more successful in creating innovations than others. Specifically, we explore how the attractiveness of innovations is influenced by the quality of interaction between the community members. Additionally, we consider trust in benevolent behaviour and competition for reputation, as well as their interaction effect, as being possible antecedents of interaction quality. Drawing on data collected through a web-based survey, this study explores the innovation activities of 127 virtual end-user communities within the fields of sports, car and motorbike tuning and model building. The findings confirm that interaction quality is positively related to the innovativeness of virtual communities. As regards the antecedents of interaction quality, the analysis indicates that trust is a key prerequisite to co-operative behaviour among the members of virtual communities. The level of competition, however, only affects interaction quality if a high level of trust is present among members. The results highlight the need to create an environment that facilitates interaction among the members of innovation communities. Furthermore, community managers should ensure that a minimum level of trust is established within the community before stimulating competition.
A new impetus for greater knowledge-sharing among team members needs to be emphasized due to the emergence of a significant new form of working known as ‘global virtual teams’. As information and communication technologies permeate every aspect of organizational life and impact the way teams communicate, work and structure relationships, global virtual teams require innovative communication and learning capabilities for different team members to effectively work together across cultural, organizational and geographical boundaries. Whereas information technology-facilitated communication processes rely on technologically advanced systems to succeed, the ability to create a knowledge-sharing culture within a global virtual team rests on the existence (and maintenance) of intra-team respect, mutual trust, reciprocity and positive individual and group relationships. Thus, some of the inherent questions we address in our paper are: (1) what are the cross-cultural challenges faced by global virtual teams?; (2) how do organizations develop a knowledge sharing culture to promote effective organizational learning among culturally-diverse team members? and; (3) what are some of the practices that can help maximize the performance of global virtual teams? We conclude by examining ways that global virtual teams can be more effectively managed in order to reach their potential in this new interconnected world and put forward suggestions for further research.
The literature on strategy has focused a great deal of attention in the quest for a taxonomy of generic strategies (Hatten & Schendel, 1977; Herbert & Deresky, 1987; and Miller & Dess, 1993). A generic strategy can be seen as a broad categorisation of strategic choices with ample applicability across industries and organisational forms (Herbert & Deresky, 1987). On this study, the model proposed by Miles and Snow (1978) was adopted to describe small firms’ competitive strategies. Miles and Snow have produced a typology of competitive strategies. Miles and Snow proposed that firms in general develop relatively stable patterns of strategic behaviour in order to accomplish a good alignment with perceived environmental conditions. Their typology involves four strategic types: defenders, prospectors, analysers and reactors. Data were collected with a sample of 150 Brazilian small firms’ owner-managers using a questionnaire adapted from Conant, Mokwa and Varadarajan (1990). Competitive strategies identified in this study gave additional evidence in support of Miles and Snow’s model of existence of four types of generic strategies in a competitive environment composed mainly of small firms.
Brainstorming was pioneered by Alex Osborn as a technique to support idea generation in individual and team applications. The emphasis on divergence was moderated in subsequent technique systems, including the Parnes-Osborn approach and its derivatives. These systems place emphasis on both divergence and convergence, in one or more search/choice sequences. Nevertheless, an emphasis on divergence remained, both in training and practical application. Only more recently have the processes of converging attracted the attention of practitioners and researchers. In some contrast, there is a body of knowledge on judgmental decision-making which has focused on the convergent processes within individual and team problem-solving, while being less concerned with search procedures. A way of combining the two paradigms is suggested, illustrated by an example from a team applying such techniques in an exercise seeking to assess the creativity of organizations.
The article examines the theoretical positions of direct control and responsible autonomy in the context of empirical work in the financial sector on the management of information systems projects. Direct control is employed by managers through the use of formal project management methodologies and techniques. Responsible autonomy addresses the difficulties in applying direct control strategies and seeks to encourage creativity and innovation by developing an informal working environment for project managers and technical staff. Contextualising the two approaches for the financial services sector, a conceptual framework is developed on the relationship between management control strategies and information systems project risk.
The developers of software create software, and the users of software engage in a process of its appropriation. This article describes how these processes can be analyzed within a framework based on systems theory. At least three areas are worthy of attention: The distinction between use of software and use of “hard” technology; the appropriation of software at managerial level and creativity as a recursive process in multi-level systems. It is hoped that this framework might provide a useful research tool in furthering understanding of the creative process occurring in software applications.
This paper introduces a novel method for investigating the interfaces between art work and managerial work in the creative industries. The method, which we are calling dispraxis, seeks to transcend the traditional divisions between the academic world and the world of practice. This particular dispraxis is a structured, iterative dialogue between an academic, a manager, and an artist on the themes identified in the call for papers. In this dispraxis the following four themes were elicited. The first theme centred on the explosion of management discourse into the creative industries. The second theme explored the difference between the creative industries and ‘normal’ business and introduced the metaphor of chelation to describe the primary need to manage and protect safe spaces for creativity to happen. The third theme was money and this theme explored how art is valued and funded, especially in a postmodern world where the notion of authenticity and Taste have been problematised. The fourth theme discussed how art is routinely identified as the highest expression of human achievement and yet is largely ignored in commercial discourse. One explanation for this is to consider artistic work as part of the abject. The metaphor of origami is used to gather together the various themes explored in the dispraxis.
Bootlegging is a special type of innovation involving covert research without the explicit approval of the responsible manager. It incorporates a dimension of secrecy as this research does not appear on project sheets drawn up by the management of firms. But it might also incorporate the dimension of conspiracy if the innovative activity is pursued by a research team, and perhaps with wider tacit support. Bootlegging exists as a phenomenon in a large number of companies. Interview findings suggest that the attitudes of management towards bootlegging are determined by prevailing perceptions of uncertainty and knowledge about the nature of decision processes.
Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs) may be seen as examples of a mathematical innovation, providing the latest technique in the toolkit of the financial economist for modelling financial applications. ANNs hold several advantages over earlier statistical and optimisation techniques. These are data driven networks, specially useful for real-time and critical applications using complex sets of data. This paper describes some examples of current applications in the financial economics area, then gives some idea about how to design and develop neural network applications. The research carried out thus far suggests that ANN models offer improved results in capturing the transitory and non-linear relationships within globalised financial markets.
Substantial advantages are being claimed for electronic brainstorming over traditional procedures. In practice the more important question is‘how might brainstorming be used within the electronic decision-support systems of today's organizations?’The answer is highly contingent on the nature of the organization, its core tasks, and personnel. In practice a hybrid of electronic and traditional brainstorming methods may prove more effective than either system used exclusively.
Curiosity is, in great and generous minds, the first passion and the last.
Samuel Johnson, 1751
Why are some people constantly on the move towards something new, while others feel comfortable with what there is? What motivates us to seek for the new? What helps us in finding it? What leads us to transform what we find into a product that is visible to others and expose us to their judgement? Research in psychology holds fascinating insights concerning the above questions. Surprisingly, neurocognitive and neuropsychological insights that could lead to a better understanding of the processes of novelty-seeking and novelty-finding, have received little attention in the creativity and innovation literature. Especially for those working in professions where the generation of the new is the core business, it would be highly relevant to know more about those biological parameters of novelty generation and especially how they make human beings behave in professional environments. Such knowledge can not only improve human resource management in creative work settings, but also help creative professionals to better understand and manage themselves. The Novelty Generation Model (NGM) introduced in this article offers a new perspective.
When TRIZ is introduced into an organization setting, it invariably encounters a host of processes and tools already in place. These can include enterprise tools such as Six Sigma, Design for Six Sigma (DFSS), QFD and Lean Manufacturing. It is fairly easy to combine TRIZ problem-solving and technological forecasting with these processes and tools, because most of these enterprise tools are problem-identifying processes that couple easily with the strong problem-solving capabilities of TRIZ. What is more difficult is to integrate TRIZ thinking with other psychologically based creativity and assessment tools. Users and trainers for these various tools tend to be very protective about each process and do not spend sufficient time thinking about ways to integrate the best of all tools. Organizations also frequently use psychological assessment tools to assist employees in career development, but they are seldom used in a proactive way to improve group problem-solving. These assessments can be used proactively within the use and implementation of TRIZ. This paper will review suggested ways to effectively integrate TRIZ innovation and problem-solving principles with these other tools.
This paper reports the development of a tool to help SMEs identify more clearly their positions in their markets and to provide pointers to strategies that might lead to increased profitability. A nine-cell matrix was constructed to form a new development based on the well-established General Electric Co. (GE) matrix. It was proposed that companies could be positioned in one of the matrix cells as a function of two critical business indicators – competitive position and industry attractiveness. Data were gathered from a 21-item innovation questionnaire completed by managing directors from 354 SMEs. Confirmatory factor analysis on data from the 21 items revealed two robust factors. The two factors could be labelled as the constructs ‘competitive position’ and ‘industry attractiveness’. These two constructs formed the axes of the matrix. Factor scores were calculated and used to place each company in its appropriate cell in the matrix. An individualised report was then generated and sent to each participating company. Positive feedback was received from companies who felt that the benchmarking and general pointers to strategic development included in their report provided value well in excess of their expectations.
A new kind of computer assisted creative problem solving method is examined in which visual images are provided to support the process. Until now, much attention has been given to developing programmes which help to structure problems and ideas so that they become more meaningful to the people who are concerned with them. Emphasis has been placed almost entirely on the written word as form of expression. It is argued that a combination of pictorial imagery and written words may be more effective in helping users to gain insights into problems and to come up with ideas or solutions to problems.
Considerable competitive success can be gained through a continuous stream of incremental improvements made over a sustained period of time. In the West, we have tended to look for the ‘big bang’ solution to manufacturing problems, relying on the step jumps offered by major radical innovation to improve performance. However, experience in Japan and other countries has demonstrated the significant potential of continuous improvement to enhance competitiveness across several dimensions such as productivity, quality, flexibility and responsiveness. At its heart, continuous improvement (CI) is an organisational innovation requiring the mobilisation and commitment of all employees within a firm. Experience in the UK has shown that CI can work, but its introduction and successful management is not automatic.