Open Access Article

Title: What guides information consensus? Approaching the reduction of equivocality in process innovations

Authors: Erik Flores-García; Jessica Bruch; Magnus Wiktorsson; Mats Jackson

Addresses: School of Innovation, Design, and Engineering, Mälardalen University, P.O. Box 325, SE-631 05 Eskilstuna, Sweden ' School of Innovation, Design, and Engineering, Mälardalen University, P.O. Box 325, SE-631 05 Eskilstuna, Sweden ' School of Innovation, Design, and Engineering, Mälardalen University, P.O. Box 325, SE-631 05 Eskilstuna, Sweden ' School of Innovation, Design, and Engineering, Mälardalen University, P.O. Box 325, SE-631 05 Eskilstuna, Sweden

Abstract: This study investigates the achievement of information consensus and the reduction of equivocality in process innovations. Drawing on the operations management literature, a new framework to guide information consensus in the reduction of equivocality in process innovations is proposed. The analysis is based on a real-time case study in the heavy vehicle industry. The results show that information consensus is not achieved by a single event, but active work towards this goal is necessary, and a clear set of pre-requisites is needed for achieving information consensus. The concepts of strategic objective, decision areas, and external and internal fit are identified as pre-requisites for achieving information consensus about the purpose, characteristics, and functionalities of process innovations. [Submitted 28 February 2018; Accepted 18 March 2019]

Keywords: production; process innovation; case study; equivocality; strategic objective; decision area; external fit; internal fit; uncertainty.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMR.2020.105488

International Journal of Manufacturing Research, 2020 Vol.15 No.1, pp.73 - 89

Accepted: 18 Mar 2019
Published online: 02 Mar 2020 *