IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/iso/educat/0145.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

How do apprentices moderate the influence of organizational innovation on the technological innovation process?

Author

Listed:
  • Christian Rupietta

    (University of Wuppertal)

  • Johannes Meuer

    (ETH Zurich)

  • Uschi Backes-Gellner

    (University of Zurich)

Abstract

This paper contributes to the literature on non-monetary benefits of Vocational Education and Training (VET) by investigating its influence on a firm's innovation process. While an increasing number of studies finds positive effects of VET on innovation in firms, the role that apprentices play in this mechanism has largely been unexplored. To analyze this role, we use the distinction between technological and organizational innovation, two complementary forms of innovation. When investigating the initiators of organizational innovation, to date, research has primarily focused on internal and external change agents at upper echelons. We conceptualize apprentices as hybrid (a combination of internal and external) change agents at lower echelons. We examine how apprentices in the Swiss VET system are key to integrating external knowledge (through school-based education) with internal knowledge (through on-the-job training) and moderating the influence of organizational innovation on technological innovation. Drawing on a sample of 1,240 firms from a representative Swiss Innovation Survey, we show that apprentices leverage the positive association between innovations in a firm’s business processes and organization of work with incremental innovations. With the description of a new mechanism that shows the significant role of apprentices on firms' technological innovation activities and evidence for supportive associations between key variables, we contribute to the understanding of the influence of VET on innovation in firms.

Suggested Citation

  • Christian Rupietta & Johannes Meuer & Uschi Backes-Gellner, 2018. "How do apprentices moderate the influence of organizational innovation on the technological innovation process?," Economics of Education Working Paper Series 0145, University of Zurich, Department of Business Administration (IBW), revised Jan 2021.
  • Handle: RePEc:iso:educat:0145
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://repec.business.uzh.ch/RePEc/iso/leadinghouse/0145_lhwpaper.pdf
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Erik Hanushek & Stephen Machin & Ludger Woessmann (ed.), 2011. "Handbook of the Economics of Education," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 4, number 4.
    2. Bruce Kogut & Udo Zander, 1992. "Knowledge of the Firm, Combinative Capabilities, and the Replication of Technology," Organization Science, INFORMS, vol. 3(3), pages 383-397, August.
    3. Wolter, Stefan C. & Ryan, Paul, 2011. "Apprenticeship," Handbook of the Economics of Education, in: Erik Hanushek & Stephen Machin & Ludger Woessmann (ed.), Handbook of the Economics of Education, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 11, pages 521-576, Elsevier.
    4. Koson Sapprasert & Tommy Høyvarde Clausen, 2012. "Organizational innovation and its effects," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(5), pages 1283-1305, October.
    5. Michael Tushman & Wendy K. Smith & Robert Chapman Wood & George Westerman & Charles O'Reilly, 2010. "Organizational designs and innovation streams," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(5), pages 1331-1366, October.
    6. Richard Whittington & Andrew Pettigrew & Simon Peck & Evelyn Fenton & Martin Conyon, 1999. "Change and Complementarities in the New Competitive Landscape: A European Panel Study, 1992–1996," Organization Science, INFORMS, vol. 10(5), pages 583-600, October.
    7. Mol, Michael J. & Birkinshaw, Julian, 2009. "The sources of management innovation: When firms introduce new management practices," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 62(12), pages 1269-1280, December.
    8. Rinaldo Evangelista & Antonio Vezzani, 2012. "The impact of technological and organizational innovations on employment in European firms," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 21(4), pages 871-899, August.
    9. Dirk Krueger & Krishna B. Kumar, 2004. "Skill-Specific rather than General Education: A Reason for US--Europe Growth Differences?," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 9(2), pages 167-207, June.
    10. Richard A. Wolfe, 1994. "Organizational Innovation: Review, Critique And Suggested Research Directions," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 31(3), pages 405-431, May.
    11. Alexander T. Nicolai & Ann‐Christine Schulz & Thomas W. Thomas, 2010. "What Wall Street Wants – Exploring the Role of Security Analysts in the Evolution and Spread of Management Concepts," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(1), pages 162-189, January.
    12. Sarah Kaplan & Keyvan Vakili, 2015. "The double-edged sword of recombination in breakthrough innovation," Strategic Management Journal, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 36(10), pages 1435-1457, October.
    13. Krueger, Dirk & Kumar, Krishna B., 2004. "US-Europe differences in technology-driven growth: quantifying the role of education," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(1), pages 161-190, January.
    14. Daniel A. Levinthal & James G. March, 1993. "The myopia of learning," Strategic Management Journal, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(S2), pages 95-112, December.
    15. Camisón, César & Villar-López, Ana, 2014. "Organizational innovation as an enabler of technological innovation capabilities and firm performance," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 67(1), pages 2891-2902.
    16. Fariborz Damanpour & Deepa Aravind, 2012. "Managerial Innovation: Conceptions, Processes, and Antecedents," Management and Organization Review, The International Association for Chinese Management Research, vol. 8(2), pages 423-454, July.
    17. Meuer, Johannes & Rupietta, Christian & Backes-Gellner, Uschi, 2015. "Layers of co-existing innovation systems," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(4), pages 888-910.
    18. Evangelista, Rinaldo & Vezzani, Antonio, 2010. "The economic impact of technological and organizational innovations. A firm-level analysis," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(10), pages 1253-1263, December.
    19. Elias Sanidas, 2005. "Organizational Innovations and Economic Growth," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 3411.
    20. Ignacio G. Vaccaro & Justin J. P. Jansen & Frans A. J. Van Den Bosch & Henk W. Volberda, 2012. "Management Innovation and Leadership: The Moderating Role of Organizational Size," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 49(1), pages 28-51, January.
    21. Sidney G. Winter & Gabriel Szulanski, 2001. "Replication as Strategy," Organization Science, INFORMS, vol. 12(6), pages 730-743, December.
    22. Hollenstein, Heinz, 2003. "Innovation modes in the Swiss service sector: a cluster analysis based on firm-level data," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(5), pages 845-863, May.
    23. Erik Hanushek & Stephen Machin & Ludger Woessmann (ed.), 2011. "Handbook of the Economics of Education," Handbook of the Economics of Education, Elsevier, edition 1, volume 3, number 3.
    24. Pettigrew, Andrew & Massini, Silvia & Numagami, Tsuyoshi, 2000. "Innovative forms of organising in Europe and Japan," European Management Journal, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 259-273, June.
    25. Roper, Stephen & Hewitt-Dundas, Nola, 2015. "Knowledge stocks, knowledge flows and innovation: Evidence from matched patents and innovation panel data," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(7), pages 1327-1340.
    26. Damanpour, Fariborz & Aravind, Deepa, 2012. "Managerial Innovation: Conceptions, Processes and Antecedents," Management and Organization Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 8(2), pages 423-454, July.
    27. Tether, Bruce S. & Tajar, Abdelouahid, 2008. "The organisational-cooperation mode of innovation and its prominence amongst European service firms," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(4), pages 720-739, May.
    28. Fariborz Damanpour, 1996. "Organizational Complexity and Innovation: Developing and Testing Multiple Contingency Models," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 42(5), pages 693-716, May.
    29. Nelson, Richard R, 1996. "The Evolution of Comparative or Competitive Advantage: A Preliminary Report on a Study," Industrial and Corporate Change, Oxford University Press, vol. 5(2), pages 597-617.
    30. Richard P. Rumelt, 1991. "How much does industry matter?," Strategic Management Journal, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 12(3), pages 167-185, March.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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


    Cited by:

    1. Matthies, Eike & Thomä, Jörg & Bizer, Kilian, 2022. "A hidden source of innovation? Revisiting the impact of initial vocational training on technological innovation," ifh Working Papers 33/2022, Volkswirtschaftliches Institut für Mittelstand und Handwerk an der Universität Göttingen (ifh).

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. O'Brien, Kieran, 2020. "Innovation types and the search for new ideas at the fuzzy front end: Where to look and how often?," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 13-24.
    2. Meuer, Johannes & Rupietta, Christian & Backes-Gellner, Uschi, 2015. "Layers of co-existing innovation systems," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 44(4), pages 888-910.
    3. Walker, Richard M. & Chen, Jiyao & Aravind, Deepa, 2015. "Management innovation and firm performance: An integration of research findings," European Management Journal, Elsevier, vol. 33(5), pages 407-422.
    4. Lurdes Barroso Simao & Luísa Cagica Carvalho & Maria José Madeira, 2021. "Intellectual structure of management innovation: bibliometric analysis," Management Review Quarterly, Springer, vol. 71(3), pages 651-677, July.
    5. Hervas-Oliver, Jose-Luis & Sempere-Ripoll, Francisca, 2015. "Disentangling the influence of technological process and product innovations," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 109-118.
    6. Arranz, N. & Arroyabe, M.F. & Li, Jun & de Arroyabe, J.C. Fernandez, 2019. "An integrated model of organisational innovation and firm performance: Generation, persistence and complementarity," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 105(C), pages 270-282.
    7. Ganter, Alois & Hecker, Achim, 2014. "Configurational paths to organizational innovation: qualitative comparative analyses of antecedents and contingencies," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 67(6), pages 1285-1292.
    8. Khosravi, Pouria & Newton, Cameron & Rezvani, Azadeh, 2019. "Management innovation: A systematic review and meta-analysis of past decades of research," European Management Journal, Elsevier, vol. 37(6), pages 694-707.
    9. Chang, Yuan-Chieh & Chen, Min-Nan, 2016. "Service regime and innovation clusters: An empirical study from service firms in Taiwan," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 45(9), pages 1845-1857.
    10. Eric A. Hanushek & Guido Schwerdt & Ludger Woessmann & Lei Zhang, 2017. "General Education, Vocational Education, and Labor-Market Outcomes over the Lifecycle," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 52(1), pages 48-87.
    11. Naciba Haned & Caroline Mothe & Thuc Uyen Nguyen-Thi, 2014. "Firm persistence in technological innovation: the relevance of organizational innovation," Economics of Innovation and New Technology, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 23(5-6), pages 490-516, September.
    12. Cécile Ayerbe & Sandra Dubouloz & Sophie Mignon & Marc Robert, 2020. "Management Innovation and Open Innovation: For and Towards Dialogue," Post-Print hal-02985953, HAL.
    13. Hyejin Cho & Pyoungsoo Lee & Choong Ho Shin, 2019. "Becoming a Sustainable Organization: Focusing on Process, Administrative Innovation and Human Resource Practices," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 11(13), pages 1-17, June.
    14. Bart H. H. Golsteyn & Anders Stenberg, 2017. "Earnings over the Life Course: General versus Vocational Education," Journal of Human Capital, University of Chicago Press, vol. 11(2), pages 167-212.
    15. Andreas Kallmuenzer & Ursula Scholl-Grissemann, 2017. "Disentangling antecedents and performance effects of family SME innovation: A knowledge-based perspective," International Entrepreneurship and Management Journal, Springer, vol. 13(4), pages 1117-1138, December.
    16. Teresa Kraśnicka & Wojciech Głód & Martyna Wronka-Pośpiech, 2016. "Management Innovation and Its Measurement," Journal of Entrepreneurship, Management and Innovation, Fundacja Upowszechniająca Wiedzę i Naukę "Cognitione", vol. 12(2), pages 95-121.
    17. Józef Ober, 2020. "Innovation Adoption: Empirical Analysis on the Example of Selected Factors of Organizational Culture in the IT Industry in Poland," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 12(20), pages 1-25, October.
    18. Wang, Fang & Chen, Kaihua, 2020. "Do product imitation and innovation require different patterns of organizational innovation? Evidence from Chinese firms," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 106(C), pages 60-74.
    19. Černe, Matej & Kaše, Robert & Škerlavaj, Miha, 2016. "Non-technological innovation research: evaluating the intellectual structure and prospects of an emerging field," Scandinavian Journal of Management, Elsevier, vol. 32(2), pages 69-85.
    20. Naciba Haned & Caroline Mothe & Thuc Uyen Nguyen-Thi, 2014. "Firm persistence in technological innovation: the relevance of organizational innovation," Post-Print halshs-01496526, HAL.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Hybrid change agents; technological innovation processes; organizational innovation; Vocational Education and Training (VET); apprenticeships;
    All these keywords.

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:iso:educat:0145. 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: . General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/isuzhch.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Sara Brunner (email available below). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/isuzhch.html .

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

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.