Diffusion and Innovation: An Organizational Perspective

Diffusion and Innovation: An Organizational Perspective

Robert S. Friedman (New Jersey Institute of Technology, USA), Desiree M. Roberts (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, NY, USA) and Jonathan D. Linton (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, NY, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-038-7.ch005
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Abstract

This chapter introduces the seminal literature addressing technological diffusion, innovative product diversification, and the organizational strategies and constraints that firms face when introducing and adopting new technologies and innovative management strategies. We begin with diffusion. Abrahamson (1991) draws critical distinctions between the processes undertaken by rational adopters of inefficient technologies and the conditions that promote the irrational rejection of efficient innovations. Attewell’s (1992) focus is on organizational learning and abilities that drive the diffusion of innovative information and computing technologies. Cooper and Zmud (1990) examine managerial involvement with information technology, its effect on the adoption and infusion of that technology, and the role of rational decision models in explaining IT adoption. The section on diffusion closes with Narin and Perry’s (1987) look at the use of patent and citation data as a method of gauging a firm’s technological strength. In this case, information is the innovative product being diffused.
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Introduction

This chapter introduces the seminal literature addressing technological diffusion, innovative product diversification, and the organizational strategies and constraints that firms face when introducing and adopting new technologies and innovative management strategies. We begin with diffusion. Abrahamson (1991) draws critical distinctions between the processes undertaken by rational adopters of inefficient technologies and the conditions that promote the irrational rejection of efficient innovations. Attewell’s (1992) focus is on organizational learning and abilities that drive the diffusion of innovative information and computing technologies. Cooper and Zmud (1990) examine managerial involvement with information technology, its effect on the adoption and infusion of that technology, and the role of rational decision models in explaining IT adoption. The section on diffusion closes with Narin and Perry’s (1987) look at the use of patent and citation data as a method of gauging a firm’s technological strength. In this case, information is the innovative product being diffused.

Chatterjee and Wernerfelt (1991) begin the second section on diversification and organizational structure by locating a theoretical basis for the identification and validation of factors that influence diversification innovation adoption strategies. Miller and Freisen (1982) ask why different decision-making variables affect entrepreneurial and conservative firms differently, focusing on the determinants of innovation that must be considered in any organization’s development strategy. Orlikowski (1992) re-examines structuration to provide an alternative conceptualization of the role of technology, focusing on the theory’s social and historical substrata to provide an explanation of how we might rethink the roles of technology in organizations. Rothwell (1992) concludes the second section by providing a rich overview of the literature on industrial innovation process, from which he soberly determines that, even after five decades of research on innovation in organizations, there is still no roadmap to successful innovation.

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Table of Contents
Foreword
Steve Walsh
Acknowledgment
Chapter 1
Robert S. Friedman, Desiree M. Roberts, Jonathan D. Linton
This book differs from other academic works on the management of technology and innovation because it focuses on the seminal research of the field.... Sample PDF
Introduction to the Field of Technology Innovation Management
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Chapter 2
R&D Process Models  (pages 31-54)
Robert S. Friedman, Desiree M. Roberts, Jonathan D. Linton
This chapter on research and development processes and models begins with a section concerning the economics and finance of R&D. Liberatore and... Sample PDF
R&D Process Models
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Chapter 3
Robert S. Friedman, Desiree M. Roberts, Jonathan D. Linton
This chapter on innovative practice supporting technological development has several thematic overlays that show some consistency in terms of... Sample PDF
Technology Development and Innovative Practice
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Chapter 4
Robert S. Friedman, Desiree M. Roberts, Jonathan D. Linton
This chapter discusses how information that supports innovation flows throughout an organization, the construction and effects of team composition... Sample PDF
Social Influence and Human Interaction with Technology
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Chapter 5
Robert S. Friedman, Desiree M. Roberts, Jonathan D. Linton
This chapter introduces the seminal literature addressing technological diffusion, innovative product diversification, and the organizational... Sample PDF
Diffusion and Innovation: An Organizational Perspective
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Chapter 6
Robert S. Friedman, Desiree M. Roberts, Jonathan D. Linton
This chapter on the role of knowledge in the operation of organizations consists of two main thrusts: the effects of knowledge (accrual... Sample PDF
Knowledge and Change in Organizations
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Chapter 7
Robert S. Friedman, Desiree M. Roberts, Jonathan D. Linton
There are three dominant themes that run through this chapter on organizational innovation strategy: the rate and nature of change; attitudes... Sample PDF
Organizational Innovation Strategy
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Chapter 8
New Product Development  (pages 192-215)
Robert S. Friedman, Desiree M. Roberts, Jonathan D. Linton
The articles addressed in this chapter on new product development can be classified in two general categories—papers that address the internal... Sample PDF
New Product Development
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Chapter 9
Robert S. Friedman, Desiree M. Roberts, Jonathan D. Linton
In this chapter on information and communication technology management, we retain a chronological order to emphasize the development of research... Sample PDF
Information and Communication Technology Management
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Chapter 10
Robert S. Friedman, Desiree M. Roberts, Jonathan D. Linton
It is beyond question how ubiquitous and powerful computing has become for commerce, communication, and culture. As the articles addressed in this... Sample PDF
Open Source and Software Development Innovation
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Chapter 11
Robert S. Friedman, Desiree M. Roberts, Jonathan D. Linton
Although the goal of this book is to provide foundational knowledge through indepth consideration of the seminal literature in the technology... Sample PDF
Directions in the Field of Technology Innovation Management
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About the Authors