There has been a dramatic reconception of the nature of organisations in the last decade, with a new focus on the central role of relationships within and beyond organisational borders. In part this has been an extension of the notion of the value chain, with detailed study of the intricacies of the inter-organisational supply chain. But more recently insights from this perspective have been supplemented by the application of the tools of social network analysis to organisational studies. Among others, innovation studies particularly benefited from these methodological and theoretical advancement.
This module provides an overview of the network concept as applicable to business and innovation, drawing from the concepts of the value system, network economics, and social capital. It surveys network applications to parent-subsidiary relationships, strategic alliances, global value chains, knowledge diffusion and the management of informal relationships within organisations. The second part of the module stimulate a critical reflection on the complex relationship between innovation and globalization, specifically remarking the embedded and networked nature of innovative processes with regional and national innovation systems and advancing the understanding of the challenges associated with innovation management.
Learning Outcomes: On successful completion of this course a student will be able to:
1. Demonstrate deep and systematic understanding of the concepts of network analysis and the analysis of large datasets; The theory of social capital; A range of contemporary applications of network analysis to business; A range of contemporary tools and techniques of social network analysis and business analytics; the multifaceted nature of innovation; the role of different actors and stakeholders in sustaining innovation; the impact of countries’ and regions’ characteristics on the innovation process
2. Conceive intra and inter-organisational relationships as networks; Critically engage with economic, sociological, psychological and mathematical literature in application to business problems; Value the varying benefits of cohesion and diversity; consider ethical dimensions of social network analysis; use computational techniques to analysis and presentation of social network data and large datasets.
3. Independently analyse data about real organisations in complex situations and solve sophisticated managerial problems, with clear understanding of limitations.
4. Write substantial reports, utilizing well-developed transferable skills in effective, professional communication such as such formatting, spelling, and story-telling.
5. Reflect on and improve personal performance in response to formative assessment. Work professionally in teams.
Specifically you are expected to:
- Provide an overview of the internationalization strategy of the company (indicatively 400 words)
- Use network analysis techniques and visualizations to describe the network in which it is embedded (indicatively 700 words)
- Provide a preliminary, exploratory, interpretation of the role played by the company and others of particular note, considering aspects such as their centrality (degree, betweenness, closeness/farness, and eigenvector centrality), location, activity, size and other relevant characteristics (500 words)
- Discuss the implication of industry and country environments on the innovation strategy of the firm (400 words)
- We require the assignment to be exported (as pdf) directly from the Jupyter notebook you will develop during the module. In doing so, you will be able to write as you would normally do in Microsoft Word, but you will also be able to show us the code, comment it, show us the outputs, and discuss the results in a single place.