The Orchestration of Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs) Innovation Networks: The Impact of knowledge sharing on networks’ innovation outputs
The British University in Dubai (BUiD)
Innovation, one word, four powerful syllables that have created a revolution over the decades with the effects that are equal of an atomic bomb. Nowadays, companies and governments are obliged to think differently and innovatively, to survive the global competition. It is obvious that large firms have always had the privileges that assisted them in being innovative, whereas small to medium enterprises (SMEs) have the capacity for innovation. But lack all key factors that would support them to be innovative. To compensate for their shortages, SMEs did the following; they turned to government intermediaries to provide them with financial support, formed alliances with other companies, or joined SMEs networks. Yet, how SMEs networks operate? How innovation can be achieved in such networks? Hence, this thesis was prepared to examine the role of government departments (hub firms) in utilizing knowledge, expertise and resources to orchestrate SMEs innovation networks. The research began with an extensive review of literature on innovation, knowledge sharing, SMEs and orchestration. Concepts, theories, types, models, challenges were all covered in the literature as well as identifying how these constructs are associated with each other. A conceptual framework was prepared and hypothesizes were developed to study the relationships between effective orchestration and the network output. Also, investigate the factors that affect knowledge sharing in networks and influence innovation. A qualitative approach was used and three government entities were interviewed for data collection. The findings affirmed that orchestration does plays a significant role in promoting knowledge sharing in the networks of SMEs, effective orchestration positively affect the innovation output in the SMEs networks and knowledge sharing between members of the SMEs networks positively affect their innovation. Therefore, to ensure the network effectiveness, the orchestrator must select the right SMEs to join the network as well as promoting knowledge sharing by establishing trust, direction, communication channels and encouraging commitment to learning.
DISSERTATION WITH DISTINCTION
innovation, Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs), knowledge sharing