Title: Design-driven innovation in SMEs: smart and sustainable organisation within industrial transformation

Authors: Laima Gerlitz

Addresses: Wismar Business School, Wismar University of Applied Sciences, Philipp-Müller-Str. 14, 23966 Wismar, Germany; Tallinn School of Economics and Business Administration, Tallinn University of Technology, Akadememia tee 3, 12618 Tallinn, Estonia

Abstract: The prior research has scrutinised the extent and scope of design integration for smart production and services innovation and value generation for smart society including enterprises, customers and end-users in the context of industry 4.0. The present paper underpins the earlier research. It traces tenets beyond successful performance of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) within industry 4.0, considering design as enabler and integrator of innovations and driver of sustainable organisational development. Particularly, in a highly connected and intertwined ecosystem, as industry 4.0 society represents, where new industries and technologies are replacing the preceding ones, sustainable development has become one of the key agenda issues. Building upon the integrated design as a capacity and driver for innovations in the current industrial development paradigm (SME ecosystem), the present paper contributes to organisational culture research and demonstrates strategic potential of design and its integrated place within small business practices enabling to innovate and grow in a sustainable manner.

Keywords: design-driven innovation; transformation; sustainability; business strategy; business model; industry 4.0; digitalisation; organisational culture; small and medium-sized enterprises; SMEs.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEPDM.2017.083917

International Journal of Environmental Policy and Decision Making, 2017 Vol.2 No.2, pp.98 - 124

Received: 02 Mar 2016
Accepted: 03 Oct 2016

Published online: 03 Apr 2017 *

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