Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Organization Strategy and Structural Differences for Radical Versus Incremental Innovation

Contents:

Author Info

  • John E. Ettlie

    (Department of Management, DePaul University, Chicago, Illinois 60604)

  • William P. Bridges

    (Department of Sociology, University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois 60680)

  • Robert D. O'Keefe

    (Department of Management, DePaul University, Chicago, Illinois 60604)

Registered author(s):

    Abstract

    The purpose of this study was to test a model of the organizational innovation process that suggests that the strategy-structure causal sequence is differentiated by radical versus incremental innovation. That is, unique strategy and structure will be required for radical innovation, especially process adoption, while more traditional strategy and structure arrangements tend to support new product introduction and incremental process adoption. This differentiated theory is strongly supported by data from the food processing industry. Specifically, radical process and packaging adoption are significantly promoted by an aggressive technology policy and the concentration of technical specialists. Incremental process adoption and new product introduction tends to be promoted in large, complex, decentralized organizations that have market dominated growth strategies. Findings also suggest that more traditional structural arrangements might be used for radical change initiation if the general tendencies that occur in these dimensions as a result of increasing size can be delayed, briefly modified, or if the organization can be partitioned structurally for radical vs. incremental innovation. In particular, centralization of decision making appears to be necessary for radical process adoption along with the movement away from complexity toward more organizational generalists. This suggests that a greater support of top managers in the innovation process is necessary to initiate and sustain radical departures from the past for that organization.

    Download Info

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1287/mnsc.30.6.682
    Download Restriction: no

    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by INFORMS in its journal Management Science.

    Volume (Year): 30 (1984)
    Issue (Month): 6 (June)
    Pages: 682-695

    as in new window
    Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:30:y:1984:i:6:p:682-695

    Contact details of provider:
    Postal: 7240 Parkway Drive, Suite 300, Hanover, MD 21076 USA
    Phone: +1-443-757-3500
    Fax: 443-757-3515
    Email:
    Web page: http://www.informs.org/
    More information through EDIRC

    Related research

    Keywords: research and development: innovation; organizational studies;

    References

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as in new window

    Cited by:
    This item has more than 25 citations. To prevent cluttering this page, these citations are listed on a separate page.

    Lists

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:30:y:1984:i:6:p:682-695. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mirko Janc).

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.