The Role of Corporate Social Capital in Business Innovation Networks
Presented to the International Forum on Knowledge Asset Dynamics, 26-27 June 2008, Matera, Italy
18 Pages Posted: 13 Mar 2009
Date Written: June 26, 2008
Purpose - This paper looks at the role of corporate social capital (CSC) in business innovation. The purpose is to demonstrate how CSC can influence business innovation performance by analysing the nature of the relationship networks that exist in a typical market place.
Design/methodology/approach - We propose a management framework for CSC which incorporates the components of centrality, absorptive capacity, human capital, internal capital and financial soundness. This framework is then used to assess a firm's innovation potential. The underlying premise is that a firm's CSC will be critical to its ability to innovate.
Originality/value - The paper introduces two original approaches. The formulation of a new management framework for CSC provides the capability to measure the CSC of firms across whole market sectors and then map CSC attributes to innovation potential. Secondly, the innovation model, called "the three E's" identifies the critical central connector and broker roles within the three innovation sub-processes of Exploration, Engagement and Exploitation and provides a practical approach for viewing the innovation life cycle from the critical networking/relationship perspective.
Practical implications - An analysis of the global information technology services sector is used to illustrate the practical application of the analytical techniques described. The example illustrates how firms can assess their own or their competitors' innovation potential through assessing their CSC in the market place.
Keywords: Corporate Social Capital, Innovation Networks, Intellectual Capital, Corporate Reputation, Social Network Analysis
JEL Classification: M4, M40, M41, M49
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation