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Innovation diffusion across firms

Larsen, G. D. (2015) Innovation diffusion across firms. In: Dainty, A., Orstavik, F. and Abbott, C. (eds.) Construction Innovation. Wiley, UK, pp. 103-115. ISBN 9781118655535

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This chapter seeks to add to the study of innovation diffusion as enacted within the UK construction sector. Whereas using relevant theoretical frames as touch points, the chapter maps out challenges associated with understanding innovation diffusion within the UK construction sector. Central to the argument developed here is just how diverse the UK construction sector is, resulting in the need to focus upon a specific constituent perspective within the sector. It is argued that constituents of the UK construction sector experience the reality of innovation diffusion differently. The chosen focus here is medium-size and typically regionally based construction firms rather than the big guns, because statistics continually demonstrate that this group of smaller firms undertake more than 80% of the sector’s output. As is pointed out in other chapters in the present volume, and as argued theoretically in the industrial network perspective of chapter 7, firms do not innovate in a vacuum. Innovation and diffusion occur within networks of firms typically around a project. A framework drawing upon empirical data is provided to additional insight on the process and the interconnections. It is argued here that the unit of analysis or level of understanding termed the firm can actually be fairly unhelpful for understanding innovation and its manifestation and diffusion within the broader UK construction sector, because this occurs across networks of firms.

Item Type:Book or Report Section
Divisions:Science > School of the Built Environment > Organisation, People and Technology group
ID Code:42928

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