Diffusion of organisational innovations: An Innovation System Perspective
Magazine article, 2000
This paper is based on two recent developments in innovation research: the increasing interest in organisational innovations (OI) and the conceptualisation of innovation systems (IS). OI are important driving forces behind organisational performance and economic development.
They may provide more efficient ways of performing and co-ordinating activities and may enhance the potential success of new technical innovations (TI). However, the factors
influencing the diffusion and rejection of OI is an area requiring further study. Previous studies have indicated that forces in the national context may influence these processes, but also that there has been relatively little research relating to this possible impact. Recently, a
stream of research has emerged, focusing on understanding innovation (mainly TI) in an IS perspective, which might offer promising routes for the study of OI as well. The overall purpose and main contribution of this paper is the development of an analytical framework for studies of OI, based on an IS perspective. Our first conclusion is that the IS approaches may contribute to the development of a framework for the diffusion of OI. However, the IS
approaches, albeit based firmly in the field of economics, entail less developed concepts for grasping the roles of intangible institutions, such as values, norms and perceptions. The framework outlined in this study is an attempt to bridge these gaps. Inspired by institutional
theory from the fields of organisational analysis in sociology and cross-cultural management, the IS concept has been elaborated, in order to include more cognitive and cultural issues.