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Organize to Generate Innovation: Tools to Measure Technical Change, Productivity and Change-Generating Efforts

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  • Pierre J. Tremblay

Abstract

Why is it that firms that compete within the same industrial sector have divergent productivity growth over time? Is this phenomenon related to specific characteristics of their organizations, their human capital, their capital investments or a mix of all of these parameters? This paper provides tools and methods to measure technological capability (human capital and change-generating efforts), technical changes processes and productivity growth. It examines the relationship between these various measures. The case material is based on first-hand empirical data gathered at mill level in two countries (India and Canada) over a period of five to seven years in the pulp and paper sector. The empirical evidence demonstrates that change-generating efforts leading to productivity growth are not only a result of formally qualified individuals (human capital). Change-generating activities were not performed only by specialists but by a larger population of workers in the most productive mills. Cet article propose des outils et des méthodes permettant de mesurer des capacités technologiques (capital humain et engagement organisationnel au changement), des processus de changements techniques, et la croissance de productivité. Il examine les relations entre ces diverses mesures. Cette étude est basée sur des données de première0501n collectées dans neuf usines de pâtes et papiers dans deux pays (Canada et Inde) sur un période de cinq à sept ans. Les évidences empiriques démontrent que la croissance de productivité réalisée grâce à l'engagement organisationnel à générer des changements techniques, n'est pas uniquement le résultat des ressources humaines ayant dans qualifications académiques (capital humain). Dans les usines les plus productives, les activités de changements, génératrices de productivité, ne sont pas exécutées que par des spécialistes0501s par une plus large population d'employés.

Suggested Citation

  • Pierre J. Tremblay, 1998. "Organize to Generate Innovation: Tools to Measure Technical Change, Productivity and Change-Generating Efforts," CIRANO Working Papers 98s-12, CIRANO.
  • Handle: RePEc:cir:cirwor:98s-12
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Deolalikar, Anil B & Roller, Lars-Hendrik, 1989. "Patenting by Manufacturing Firms in India: Its Production and Impact," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 37(3), pages 303-314, March.
    2. Pierre J. Tremblay, 1998. "Informal Thinkering: How Is It Important?," CIRANO Working Papers 98s-13, CIRANO.
    3. Katz, Jorge M., 1984. "Domestic technological innovations and dynamic comparative advantage : Further reflections on a comparative case-study program," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(1-2), pages 13-37.
    4. Romijn, Henny, 1997. "Acquisition of technological capability in development: A quantitative case study of Pakistan's capital goods sector," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 359-377, March.
    5. Teitel, Simon, 1981. "Towards an understanding of technical change in semi-industrialized countries," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 127-147, July.
    6. Dahlman, Carl J. & Ross-Larson, Bruce & Westphal, Larry E., 1987. "Managing technological development: Lessons from the newly industrializing countries," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 15(6), pages 759-775, June.
    7. Bell, Martin & Ross-Larson, Bruce & Westphal, Larry E., 1984. "Assessing the performance of infant industries," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(1-2), pages 101-128.
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