Developing communities of innovation by identifying innovation champions

Coakes, Elayne and Smith, Peter A.C. (2007) Developing communities of innovation by identifying innovation champions. Learning Organization, 14 (1). pp. 74-85. ISSN 0969-6474


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Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to propose that a form of communities of practice (CoP), a community of innovation (CoInv), is the best support for sustainable innovation. It aims to outline a method for identifying champions of innovation in organisation. Design/methodology/approach - The paper draws on extant research to argue that innovation is facilitated and supported by innovation champions, who have most influence outside traditional organisational structures when they are members of a close-knit community - a CoInv. A potential method for identification of champions of innovation is highlighted. Findings - Innovation champions are special people, with particular personality types and psychological profiles. In order to succeed in championing innovations in organisations they need both procedural and resource support, and social and cognitive support. The influence of innovation champions comes through social contacts, multiplied through the communities in which they participate, through the genuine esteem in which they are held. Developing CoInv around such champions makes practical sense for organisations. Originality/value - Identifying champions of innovation will permit a CoInv to form that links social networks and transcends organisational internal boundaries and forming such a community will potentially trigger more successfully supported innovations.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Communities, innovation, knowledge sharing
Subjects: University of Westminster > Westminster Business School
Depositing User: Miss Nina Watts
Date Deposited: 05 Dec 2006
Last Modified: 17 Oct 2011 13:46

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