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Innovation’s network(ing) antecedents: team- and individual-level investigations and propositions

Coleridge, Chris (2014) Innovation’s network(ing) antecedents: team- and individual-level investigations and propositions. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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The aim of my thesis is to investigate the role interpersonal networks play in determining innovation outcomes, and the antecedents of individual behaviour in networks by “players” in the innovation game. These investigations—two qualitative studies and a detailed, highly developed conceptual framework — give rise to a number of propositions that may serve as a foundation for greater understanding and which make a range of novel contributions to the literature on networks and innovation management. Too little is understood about social networks and their impact on innovation. As the world of business continues its move away from bureaucratic hierarchies to projectified network organisations, from integrated monoliths to modular specialists, the importance of such an understanding grows. Innovation has always taken place in the context of embedded ties—its prospective nature does not normally sit well with a depersonalised, arms-length, market-based approach. Yet our understanding of the intersection of individuals’ and teams’ networks (and networking) with their ability to succeed in innovative action is limited. There are various trajectories within both the innovation management literature and the networks literature which take on the challenge, but often the theoretical roots on which they draw are planted in old forms of organisation and this limits the speed of their advance in delivering understanding of the new realities in bringing innovations to market. Hence, this thesis uses qualitative methods and conceptual models to propose new contributions to these fields. The principal contributions of this thesis are: • A new perspective and theoretical offering concerning how innovation teams can succeed, synthesising boundary-spanning with Burt’s models of brokerage, and Obstfeld’s tertius iungens. • A team- and leader-based model of the characteristics needed over the stages of business model innovation. • A fresh perspective on how agents (specifically venture capitalists) select and pursue networking strategies to “hunt” or “harvest” opportunities.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: © 2014 Chris Coleridge
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
Sets: Departments > Management
Supervisor: Barkema, Harry

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