In recent research studies on management and organization, aggregations among SMEs are continuously brought up and put forward as a tool for gaining competitiveness and overcoming the crisis that is still gripping the global economy. In some cases these aggregations are promoted and encouraged by public policies or incentivized in other ways. Networks are believed to be able to lead SMEs towards new market scenarios, mainly thanks to the strengthening of their innovative capacity that require them to reach a “critical mass” in terms of resources and competences. This suggests to carefully investigate the drivers of network performance. This suggests that a careful investigation of the drivers of network performance is advisable. Keeping in mind the topics that have been proposed, we believe it could be interesting to see how the translation of change strategies into practices that are able to generate innovation happens. Our research pursues explorative goals through an in-depth, longitudinal analysis of a single case-study. Under investigation is the start-up of an innovation network (Neftech) consisting of six small- and micro-sized firms, located in northern Italy and operating in the hightechnology sector. The research is linked to two of the fields proposed in the sub-theme: namely the overcoming of inertia and the shift from design to operating activities; it also refers to tensions between stability and change, these being clearly perceived during the early running of the analyzed network. The research question we aim to answer is oriented towards understanding if a specific pattern of roles and actors involved can help to overcome inertia that emerges in the evolutionary process of an innovation-oriented network. In particular, we propose to assess how the keyactors try to manage the symptoms and causes of inertia, encountered while leading the network to the full operating stage. This paper is structured as follows: before introducing the research design we propose a synthetic theoretical background; subsequently, we describe and reflect upon the case history and finally, we outline the following research phases.

Overcoming inertia in innovation networks: evidence from Italian SMEs

BONTI, MARIACRISTINA;
2013

Abstract

In recent research studies on management and organization, aggregations among SMEs are continuously brought up and put forward as a tool for gaining competitiveness and overcoming the crisis that is still gripping the global economy. In some cases these aggregations are promoted and encouraged by public policies or incentivized in other ways. Networks are believed to be able to lead SMEs towards new market scenarios, mainly thanks to the strengthening of their innovative capacity that require them to reach a “critical mass” in terms of resources and competences. This suggests to carefully investigate the drivers of network performance. This suggests that a careful investigation of the drivers of network performance is advisable. Keeping in mind the topics that have been proposed, we believe it could be interesting to see how the translation of change strategies into practices that are able to generate innovation happens. Our research pursues explorative goals through an in-depth, longitudinal analysis of a single case-study. Under investigation is the start-up of an innovation network (Neftech) consisting of six small- and micro-sized firms, located in northern Italy and operating in the hightechnology sector. The research is linked to two of the fields proposed in the sub-theme: namely the overcoming of inertia and the shift from design to operating activities; it also refers to tensions between stability and change, these being clearly perceived during the early running of the analyzed network. The research question we aim to answer is oriented towards understanding if a specific pattern of roles and actors involved can help to overcome inertia that emerges in the evolutionary process of an innovation-oriented network. In particular, we propose to assess how the keyactors try to manage the symptoms and causes of inertia, encountered while leading the network to the full operating stage. This paper is structured as follows: before introducing the research design we propose a synthetic theoretical background; subsequently, we describe and reflect upon the case history and finally, we outline the following research phases.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11568/236750
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