Title: Innovation management: a subjective practice

Authors: Christopher J. Brown, Philip Frame

Addresses: Innovative Management Solutions Consultancy Ltd., Golden Row, Whipsnade Green, Whipsnade, Beds. LU6 2LQ, UK. ' Middlesex University Business School, The Burroughs, Middlessex, NW4 4BT, UK

Abstract: This research article explores the role of subjectivity in innovation management, by discussing the important impact that group symbolic interpretation has on their interpretative systems, and the relationship this has on group collective actions. This article presents initial research findings that support the positive contribution that cognitively mapping groups| sensemaking and understanding of relationships between their symbolic interpretation of organisational events, and innovative outcomes, and their subsequent collective actions, can have. The article concludes by discussing the implications for future innovation management in uncertain and ambiguous environments, and particularly the role that the development and mapping of this innovation and learning process framework can have on groups| cognitive and affective commitment to cross-functional product innovation activities. This has significant implications for senior management, and the nature, and role, of project-based innovators for future New Product Developments (NPDs).

Keywords: sensemaking; symbolic interpretation; superordinate goals; innovation management; value orientations; subjectivity; innovation processes; group symbolic interpretation; group collective actions; cognitive mapping; new product development; NPD; senior management.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMCP.2007.014997

International Journal of Management Concepts and Philosophy, 2007 Vol.2 No.3, pp.209 - 223

Published online: 30 Aug 2007 *

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