Balancing centripetal and centrifugal forces in a lifecycle model of innovation: A meta-analysis

Mark W Werwath*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

Abstract

Organizations struggle to become consistently innovative throughout their lifecycle. This struggle becomes especially important to organizations when the capacity to innovate becomes depleted due to adverse economic and business conditions. This study analyzes the antecedents to organizational innovation using a quantitative meta-analysis of the extant literature within the context of an established theoretical frame for the field. This study expands the theoretical frame of Willow Sheremata , which distinguishes between centrifugal and centripetal forces, by analyzing and categorizing ninety-four studies (outcomes) and analyzing their impact on innovation. This paper directly addresses the balance of centrifugal (new idea generating) and centripetal (integrating) forces optimally needed as a function of the organization's lifecycle. It is posited that organizations need more centrifugal forces during the infant (initiation) stages of the lifecycle in order to generate the ideas and energy needed to establish strategic direction. Once established, more centripetal forces are needed to integrate the organization's energy and channel it toward implementation of the new strategy. It is further posited that centrifugal forces are particularly needed during the initiation stages of a radical innovation while centripetal forces are needed during all stages of the incremental innovation. A meta-analysis comparing subsets of the data concluded that centripetal forces have a positive moderating effect on both radical and incremental types of innovations studied, and during the implementation and initiation phases of innovation. It was also shown that centrifugal forces have a positive moderating effect only on radical innovations during both initiation and implementation stages while positively moderating incremental innovations during only the initiation stage of innovation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages922-928
Number of pages7
StatePublished - Dec 1 2004
EventProceedings - 2004 IEEE International Engineering Management Conference: Innovation and Entrepreneurship for Sustainable Development, IEMC 2004 - , Singapore
Duration: Oct 18 2004Oct 21 2004

Other

OtherProceedings - 2004 IEEE International Engineering Management Conference: Innovation and Entrepreneurship for Sustainable Development, IEMC 2004
CountrySingapore
Period10/18/0410/21/04

Keywords

  • Centrifugal
  • Centripetal
  • Innovation
  • Metaanalysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)
  • Management Science and Operations Research

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    Werwath, M. W. (2004). Balancing centripetal and centrifugal forces in a lifecycle model of innovation: A meta-analysis. 922-928. Paper presented at Proceedings - 2004 IEEE International Engineering Management Conference: Innovation and Entrepreneurship for Sustainable Development, IEMC 2004, Singapore.