Are small world networks always best for innovation?

Kastelle, Tim and Steen, John (2010) Are small world networks always best for innovation?. Innovation: Management Policy and Practice, 12 1: 75-87. doi:10.5172/impp.12.1.75

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Author Kastelle, Tim
Steen, John
Title Are small world networks always best for innovation?
Journal name Innovation: Management Policy and Practice   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1447-9338
Publication date 2010-04
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.5172/impp.12.1.75
Volume 12
Issue 1
Start page 75
End page 87
Total pages 13
Editor Mark Dodgson
Place of publication Maleny, Qld, Australia
Publisher eContent Management
Collection year 2011
Language eng
Subject C1
150307 Innovation and Technology Management
910406 Technological and Organisational Innovation
Abstract It is becoming increasingly apparent that a firm's communication network structure has a significant impact on its innovative capability. We know that in many cases, small world network structures in particular lead to improved innovation output. This paper is the first to test whether or not this finding is also true inside of large project-based firms. We study a project team with 130 members using complex network analysis. The team's project includes several innovations, and the knowledge sharing networks do have small world structures. However, these networks have much more hierarchical structures than those measured in other innovation networks. We conclude that identifying a small world structure is only the first necessary step in analysing such networks. We identify a hierarchical generative mechanism for these structures, which demonstrates that gaining a better understanding of the history and evolution of particular networks is a critical step in analysing them. © eContent Management Pty Ltd 2010 All Rights Reserved.
Keyword Innovation output
Networks
Small world structures
Communication networks
Complex network analysis
Knowledge sharing
Network evolution
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Faculty of Business, Economics and Law -- Publications
Official 2011 Collection
UQ Business School Publications
 
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 7 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 12 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Fri, 14 May 2010, 14:46:21 EST by Karen Morgan on behalf of Faculty of Business, Economics & Law