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Can innovation be measured? A framework of how measurement of innovation engages attention in firms

Brattström, Anna LU ; Frishammar, Johan ; Richtnér, Anders and Pflueger, Dane (2018) In Journal of Engineering and Technology Management - JET-M 48. p.64-75
Abstract
Many firms manage the innovation process by using metrics. Yet, whether measurement supports or hinders innovation continues to be a topic of debate. To shed new light on this debate, this paper presents a conceptual framework of how measurement engages attention in firms. We draw on attention based theory and conceptualize innovation measurement as an attention-focusing device. We identify two ideal types of measurement practices. i) Directional Measurement: which is based on few and unidirectional metrics and encourages exploitative innovation efforts. ii) Conversational Measurement: which is based on multiple and ambiguous metrics and encourages exploration. We extend theory building in the technology and accounting literatures by theo-... (More)
Many firms manage the innovation process by using metrics. Yet, whether measurement supports or hinders innovation continues to be a topic of debate. To shed new light on this debate, this paper presents a conceptual framework of how measurement engages attention in firms. We draw on attention based theory and conceptualize innovation measurement as an attention-focusing device. We identify two ideal types of measurement practices. i) Directional Measurement: which is based on few and unidirectional metrics and encourages exploitative innovation efforts. ii) Conversational Measurement: which is based on multiple and ambiguous metrics and encourages exploration. We extend theory building in the technology and accounting literatures by theo- rizing the role of metrics and measurement for attention and by discussing the implications of such attentional engagement for innovation performance. In so doing, we engage closely with the managerial task of managing innovation while simplifying its conditions, thereby providing ac- tionable advice. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
innovation management, key performance measurement, measuring innovation, attention, attention based theory, process model, exploration and exploitation, conversational measurement, directional measurement
in
Journal of Engineering and Technology Management - JET-M
volume
48
pages
64 - 75
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • scopus:85045305099
ISSN
0923-4748
DOI
10.1016/j.jengtecman.2018.04.003
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
427f5e3f-c370-4e69-9e15-4bf571f64821
date added to LUP
2018-04-16 08:43:26
date last changed
2019-07-16 03:47:48
@article{427f5e3f-c370-4e69-9e15-4bf571f64821,
  abstract     = {Many firms manage the innovation process by using metrics. Yet, whether measurement supports or hinders innovation continues to be a topic of debate. To shed new light on this debate, this paper presents a conceptual framework of how measurement engages attention in firms. We draw on attention based theory and conceptualize innovation measurement as an attention-focusing device. We identify two ideal types of measurement practices. i) Directional Measurement: which is based on few and unidirectional metrics and encourages exploitative innovation efforts. ii) Conversational Measurement: which is based on multiple and ambiguous metrics and encourages exploration. We extend theory building in the technology and accounting literatures by theo- rizing the role of metrics and measurement for attention and by discussing the implications of such attentional engagement for innovation performance. In so doing, we engage closely with the managerial task of managing innovation while simplifying its conditions, thereby providing ac- tionable advice.},
  author       = {Brattström, Anna and Frishammar, Johan  and Richtnér, Anders  and Pflueger, Dane},
  issn         = {0923-4748},
  keyword      = {innovation management,key performance measurement,measuring innovation,attention,attention based theory,process model,exploration and exploitation,conversational measurement,directional measurement},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {04},
  pages        = {64--75},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {Journal of Engineering and Technology Management - JET-M},
  title        = {Can innovation be measured? A framework of how measurement of innovation engages attention in firms},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jengtecman.2018.04.003},
  volume       = {48},
  year         = {2018},
}