Strategic innovation networks

  • Martin J.J. Beckinsale

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


This thesis draws on two key areas of the innovation literature, the strategic management of technology (SMOT) and innovation networks. The aim is to integrate these two areas of the management of innovation literature to develop a framework which I describe as the Strategic Innovation Network (SIN). The key proposition that the revised framework (SIN) aims to address is based on the work of Chandler (1962). Chandler's (1962) conclusion that 'structure follows strategy' is examined in relation to the interaction between corporate/technology strategy and network structure. The SIN is intended to address weaknesses in both the SMOT and network literature. The research data is based on five detailed longitudinal case studies. The organisations are defined as mid-corporate firms operating in traditional manufacturing sectors. Each organisation was chosen on the basis that it was aiming to develop its innovative capacity through product or process innovation projects. The research was carried out over an 18 month period with interviews being held regularly to develop the longitudinal aspect of the study analysis. The data for each individual case study is examined using the SIN framework. The longitudinal approach addresses the objective to provide a dynamic model of the innovation processes by mapping the changes in network structure during the course of individual projects. The network structural changes are examined in relation to each organisation's strategy and five key dynamic network stages are identified in relation to the innovation process. These network stages show the influence strategy has on the structures adopted by the five case studies.
Date of Award2001
Original languageEnglish


  • Strategic innovation networks
  • technology strategy
  • strategic management
  • dynamic innovation process
  • dyadic links
  • network actors

Cite this