انگیزه نوآوری فعال : تئوری عاملیت و مدل اجتماعی در R & Dجهانی
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Journal of International Management, Volume 13, Issue 4, December 2007, Pages 472–487
An integration of agency theory and socialization models is developed and used to explain the types of governance and organizational structures associated with self-initiated subsidiary innovation. This theorizing suggests that: 1) The hub structure is the greatest user of behavior-based contracting and engenders the fewest self-initiated innovations; 2) The federation structure is the greatest user of outcome-based contracting and engenders the most self-initiated innovations, but these are primarily oriented to business level strategy rather than corporate; and, 3) The network structure is the greatest user of goal internalization and is the strongest generator of self-initiated innovations which are oriented to corporate-level strategy. The empirical evidence from extant studies of other researchers in the field is consistent with these propositions. Implications for management practice, research and theory are discussed in the paper.
Empirical research shows that self-initiated, proactive innovation by subsidiaries is an important capability of competitive global firms (Bartlett and Ghoshal, 1998, Birkinshaw and Hood, 1998a and Birkinshaw and Hood, 1998b) and that research and development (R&D) is an important source of such innovations (Bartlett and Ghoshal, 1998, Boutellier et al., 2000, Chiesa, 1996, Chiesa, 1999, Gassmann and von Zedtwitz, 1999 and Medcof, 2001). Further, a major intent of many subsidiary-based innovations is to enhance the technical capabilities of the firm (Chung, 2001, Moore, 2001, Pearce, 1989 and Peng and Wang, 2000). However, theory explaining the conditions under which the subsidiaries of large global firms will take the initiative to innovate is still in its infancy. This paper attempts to develop a better understanding of this phenomenon. Subsidiary technology initiatives (STIs) are defined as discrete, proactive undertakings by subsidiaries that advance new ways for companies to use or expand their technologies and are a particular type of innovation, which may be included under Birkinshaw's (1997) general definition of subsidiary initiative. STIs are of two types, which have different effects on the firm's global strategic positioning. Business Strategy STIs (abbreviated as BSSTIs) are initiated by the subsidiary but not shared globally. They constitute the business-unit strategy of the subsidiary, are developed locally, and are oriented to regional business objectives only. The second category, Corporate Strategy STIs (abbreviated as CSSTIs), are initiated first by the subsidiary but are then shared and developed globally. They are therefore strategic at the global level. STIs in general are one form in which strategic initiative can manifest itself in the global firm (Birkinshaw, 1996, Birkinshaw and Hood, 1997, Birkinshaw and Hood, 1998a, Birkinshaw and Hood, 1998b, Coughlan and Brady, 1996, Hood and Taggart, 1999, Howells, 1990 and Howells, 2000). They require investment by the subsidiary and/or parent and, if successful, result in an improvement in the economic condition and/or technological capabilities of the subsidiary and/or global company. An example of an STI would include a subsidiary conceiving a new method of manufacturing based on one of its own technological innovations. STIs, although driven by technology at the core, also involve non-technical capabilities in areas such as manufacturing, marketing, leadership and management. Subsidiary initiatives, and specifically STIs, have been of interest recently because they are potential sources of strategic advantage based upon capabilities that are not found at headquarters (HQ). For example, multinational companies (MNCs) are discovering that intellectual capital dispersed globally across their various subsidiaries can give them significant advantage if effectively mobilized. But that mobilization often requires technical and market knowledge, and entrepreneurial savvy that are not found at the global HQ. Firms must learn to leverage their internationally dispersed resources through STIs if they are to remain competitive. Research and theory which improve our understanding of STIs should help them with that learning. Organizational structure can be an important factor in determining whether or not STIs occur in a firm (Chiesa, 1996 and Gassmann and von Zedtwitz, 1999) and the study of international technology management has been a source of many insights into how best to structure firms for that purpose. This line of research includes a number of very good empirical studies which have been leveraged into insightful, induction-based models which help us to organize and understand a great deal of data (e.g. Boutellier et al., 2000, Chiesa, 1996, Chiesa, 1999, Gassmann and von Zedtwitz, 1999, Gerybadze and Reger, 1999, Kuemmerle, 1997 and von Zedtwitz and Gassmann, 2002). But, although these studies do call upon established theories such as transaction cost economics and agency theory in their formulations (see Gassmann and von Zedtwitz, 1999, for a particularly good example), none of them has yet attempted a theory-based explanation of how organizational structure affects STIs, and the best practices for motivating STIs. In this paper we propose a general theoretical model which explains the structural, governance and cultural conditions under which subsidiary-initiated innovations are most likely to occur. Our theoretical model is based upon an integration of agency theory and socialization models of organizational control. We go on to apply this theoretical model to Gassman and von Zedtwitz's (1999) integrative model of international R&D structures, which leads to an explanation of why some structures foster more STIs than others. At a theoretical level, our analysis provides new insights into the relationship between agency theory and socialization models. These are currently viewed as alternative models of organizational function but we show how they can be synergistically combined and used together to increase our theoretical understanding of the phenomena of proactive innovation. The resulting observations are consistent with the extant empirical literature and lead to suggestions for new avenues of research. We use agency theory and socialization models here for the following reasons. For one, they are established theoretical perspectives whose value and limitations are quite well understood. It will be useful to systematically tie the study of technology initiatives to the rich conceptual and empirical traditions that have arisen around these approaches. Agency theory and socialization models have traditionally been used to address issues of organizational control. Freedom to innovate is, in a sense, the opposite of control. So these control-based approaches offer a theoretical framework in which to address situations of relaxed control. This analysis will also provide a new and important extension of agency theory into the study of technology management, a field in which it has not often been considered (cf. Floricel and Lampel, 1998). It is also important to bear in mind that while agency theory was originally developed at the individual level of analysis, researchers have since extended its use to the organizational level of analysis and to the study of international management (e.g. Chang and Taylor, 1999, Gupta and Govindarajan, 1991, Johnson and Medcof, 2002, Nohria and Ghoshal, 1994, O'Donnell, 2000 and Roth and O'Donnell, 1996). Socialization models have also been applied in the context of international management, although with varied terminologies. Chang and Taylor (1999) labeled them “cultural control”; Doz and Prahalad (1991), “psychological affiliation”; Gupta and Govindarajan (1991), “corporate socialization of subsidiary managers”; Hedlund (1981), “normative integration”; Nobel and Birkinshaw (1998), “socialization”; Nohria and Ghoshal (1994), “shared values”; O'Donnell (2000), “social control”; and Roth and O'Donnell (1996), “parent commitment” and “control through socialization”. These models talk about the socialization of organization members through mechanisms such as job rotation across functions and subsidiaries, improved communications across functions and subsidiaries, and management development programs attended by people from different functions and subsidiaries that focus on the common culture. The next part of this paper will establish a theoretical link between agency theory and models of socialization. This will lead to a number of observations about contracts, socialization and agent initiatives which draw on both conceptual traditions. Next, various organizational configurations for global R&D and technology management will be mapped into this general theoretical space. The resulting theory-based insights about initiatives are applied to STIs. Finally, the implications of these conceptual developments for theory, research and management practice are discussed.
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
Technology managers currently grapple with tremendous challenges as they attempt to mobilize internationally dispersed capabilities within globally integrated strategies. The leveraging of subsidiary technology initiatives has come to be seen as one effective strategy for attaining competitive advantage. However, the organizational structures used to coordinate international operations can impose significant constraints on the discretion subsidiaries have to undertake self-initiated innovation. Understanding the constraints using agency theory and socialization models, as described in this paper, can enable managers to meet their challenges more effectively and help researchers direct their attentions to the issues that will be of most help for managers.