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Appears in:
Pages: 477-491
Publication year: 2011
ISBN: 978-84-614-7423-3
ISSN: 2340-1079

Conference name: 5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 7-9 March, 2011
Location: Valencia, Spain

STRATEGIES AND CHARACTERISTICS OF THE INNOVATIVE CAPABILITY OF SMALL AND MEDIUM-SIZED ENTERPRISES. RESEARCH RESULTS FROM GERMANY

A. Hansen, C. Jungbluth, F. Hees, S. Jeschke

RWTH Aachen University / Center for Learning and Knowledge Management/ Department for Mechanical Engineering (IMA/ZLW & IfU) (GERMANY)
“Peak enterprises are constantly innovating enterprises.
This is a consequence of their organizational properties.”
(Robert Waterman, American consultant)

The high significance of innovation for the growth and sustainable success of enterprises is being exhaustively discussed in science and politics for a number of years. Especially the increasing competitive pressure and the constant change of market and customer requirements make sure that only such enterprises are long-term successful that have recognized the importance of innovative capability for their corporate success (cf. Neubauer 2008: 1). The high significance of innovation requires an intense research of those organizational framework conditions and factors that constitute innovative capability and innovation success of enterprises.
Since 2007, the interdisciplinary research project International Monitoring (IMO), funded by the German Ministry of Education and Research and conducted by the IMA/ZLW & IfU of RWTH Aachen University, researches the thematic complex Innovative Capability and its scientific, political and especially economical significance for Germany as a business venue. To this end, among other measures continuous Innovation Workshops are held in small and medium enterprises aimed at identifying strategies and according structural characteristics of innovative capability. During these workshops on the one hand the IMO project analyzes corporate innovation processes; on the other hand it develops potentials for innovation friendly design of work and learning processes and work environments in terms of an increase of innovative capability together with the enterprise.
This article presents the current German and European discussion within the research area Innovative Capability from the perspective of work science. In this context, it introduces relevant findings from analyzed enterprises which are decorated for their top position on innovation friendly strategies and characteristics of corporate innovative capability. For the generation of Innovation for example it is important to effectively use the knowledge and human potential of employees in an enterprise. Structural characteristics of this strategy are among others safeguarding and distribution of knowledge and diversity management. Within an enterprise, knowledge e.g. is retained in a digital infrastructure (knowledge database) in order to be constantly available. Diversity management is also regarded as a structural characteristic of an enterprise capable of innovation, as this starts out from the productive diversity of an organization’s employees that broadens the knowledge base.
The identified strategies and characteristics are classified according to a systemic model of organizational development (Henning n. d.). This step is necessary in order to render scientific findings applicable for enterprises. The OSTO systemic model assumes that innovative capability of an enterprise can be specifically controlled through the interaction of various design components, among others people, technology, decision system, or reward and control system. Through knowledge about innovation friendly strategies and characteristics enterprises can systematically work on increasing their innovative capability and can create organizational framework conditions that sustainably foster the generation of innovation and establish an innovation culture within the enterprise.
@InProceedings{HANSEN2011STR,
author = {Hansen, A. and Jungbluth, C. and Hees, F. and Jeschke, S.},
title = {STRATEGIES AND CHARACTERISTICS OF THE INNOVATIVE CAPABILITY OF SMALL AND MEDIUM-SIZED ENTERPRISES. RESEARCH RESULTS FROM GERMANY},
series = {5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2011 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-614-7423-3},
issn = {2340-1079},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {7-9 March, 2011},
year = {2011},
pages = {477-491}}
TY - CONF
AU - A. Hansen AU - C. Jungbluth AU - F. Hees AU - S. Jeschke
TI - STRATEGIES AND CHARACTERISTICS OF THE INNOVATIVE CAPABILITY OF SMALL AND MEDIUM-SIZED ENTERPRISES. RESEARCH RESULTS FROM GERMANY
SN - 978-84-614-7423-3/2340-1079
PY - 2011
Y1 - 7-9 March, 2011
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2011 Proceedings
SP - 477
EP - 491
ER -
A. Hansen, C. Jungbluth, F. Hees, S. Jeschke (2011) STRATEGIES AND CHARACTERISTICS OF THE INNOVATIVE CAPABILITY OF SMALL AND MEDIUM-SIZED ENTERPRISES. RESEARCH RESULTS FROM GERMANY, INTED2011 Proceedings, pp. 477-491.
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