Business Unit Reorganization and Innovation in New Product Markets
This paper empirically examines how business unit reorganization affects innovation, and explores how the learning process may mediate this relationship. Unit reorganization is the creation, deletion, or recombination of business units within a firm. Innovation is radical and involves product market entry by a firm into markets in which it was not previously active. I test competing hypotheses that predict either a U-shape or inverted U-shape relationship between reorganization and innovation to determine whether and how learning occurs in the presence of unit-level structural change. Theoretical support is drawn from literature on dynamic capabilities and organizational learning. The sample studied is 250 medical firms belonging to the pharmaceutical, healthcare-service, and medical-device industries, studied over a 20-year period. The findings are twofold. First, reorganization is found to exhibit a U-shape relationship with innovation, supporting learning arguments that stress the importance of experiencing a cohort of multiple events. Second, only reorganization experiences within a current period affect future innovation; past experiences do not impact future innovation, implying that firms may face constraints in organizational memory. The study concludes by exploring the structural origin (i.e., from internal, acquired, or recombined units) of innovative activity within firms.
Volume (Year): 55 (2009)
Issue (Month): 7 (July)
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: 7240 Parkway Drive, Suite 300, Hanover, MD 21076 USA|
Web page: http://www.informs.org/
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Brickley, James A. & Van Drunen, Leonard D., 1990. "Internal corporate restructuring : An empirical analysis," Journal of Accounting and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(1-3), pages 251-280, January.
- Kenneth J. Arrow, 1962. "The Economic Implications of Learning by Doing," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 29(3), pages 155-173.
- Jo Thori Lind & Halvor Mehlum, 2010.
"With or Without U? The Appropriate Test for a U-Shaped Relationship,"
Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics,
Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 72(1), pages 109-118, February.
- Lind, Jo Thori & Mehlum, Halvor, 2007. "With or Without U? The appropriate test for a U shaped relationship," Memorandum 21/2007, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
- Lind, Jo Thori & Mehlum, Halvor, 2007. "With or Without U? - The appropriate test for a U shaped relationship," MPRA Paper 4823, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Granstrand, Ove & Sjölander, Sören, 1990. "The Acquisition of Technology and Small Firms by Large Firms," Working Paper Series 213, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
- Melissa A. Schilling & Patricia Vidal & Robert E. Ployhart & Alexandre Marangoni, 2003. "Learning by Doing Something Else: Variation, Relatedness, and the Learning Curve," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 49(1), pages 39-56, January.
- Fariborz Damanpour, 1996. "Organizational Complexity and Innovation: Developing and Testing Multiple Contingency Models," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 42(5), pages 693-716, May.
- Abernathy, William J. & Clark, Kim B., 1985. "Innovation: Mapping the winds of creative destruction," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 3-22, February.
- Langlois, Richard N. & Robertson, Paul L., 1992. "Networks and innovation in a modular system: Lessons from the microcomputer and stereo component industries," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 297-313, August.
- Capron, Laurence & Mitchell, Will, 1998. "Bilateral Resource Redeployment and Capabilities Improvement Following Horizontal Acquisitions," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(3), pages 453-484, September.
- Granstrand, Ove & Sjolander, Soren, 1990. "The acquisition of technology and small firms by large firms," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 367-386, June.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:55:y:2009:i:7:p:1237-1254. 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.