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Research Profiles

each profiles combination of research tasks and & Wilemon, 2007) and the theory of idea innova-
research objectives. tion networks (Hage & Hollingsworth, 2000; Kline
& Rosenberg, 1986) are implicitly calling attention
to the importance of research as a mechanism for
BACKGROUND: THE NEED FOR A learning. Further, these perspectives suggest the
NEW PERSPECTIVE OF RESEARCH importance of inter-organizational networks that
MANAGEMENT STYLES connect two or more of the six arenas of research:
basic, applied research, product development,
Essentially, we identify two lines of argument manufacturing research, quality research, and
for justifying a new perspective of management commercialization research. In fact, the latter
styles. We take as a given that the central impor- literature necessitates a considerable revision
tance of scientific and technological research, not of the organic model, specifically to allow for
only for competitiveness but many other national external relationships.
goals, speaks to the need for greater attention. In short, the organic model, and organizational
First, the closest appropriate specialty, namely innovation research in general, needs to be linked
organizational innovation research, needs to be in various ways to the research project literature
altered in the light of new theoretical and concep- (Brown & Eisenhardt, 1995; Hobday, 1998;
tual developments (see Hage, 1999). Second, the Shenhar, 2001) and the abundant literature on
literature on scientific and technological research inter-organizational relationships cited above. One
is missing a conceptual apparatus that would of the reasons for this is the dramatic changes that
allow for the accumulation of findings across a have occurred because of the explosive growth
myriad of studies. and globalization of R&D and the way in which
The first argument is based on the fact that most science and technology are evolving (Hage &
current and past innovation research continues Hollingsworth, 2000). Furthermore, the linkages
to be dominated by Burns and Stalkers (1961) between arenas (for example basic and applied) of
seminal work on the organic model. In many ways, research are usually at the project/program level
this model has become outdated. For example, the and therefore research projects and the problems
model is largely focused on new product devel- of how to manage them should be the analytical
opment by engineers, rather than scientific and focus.
technological research. This model also largely The second line of reasoning that justifies
ignores the concept of complexity, which has the need for a theory of research management
proven to be fundamental when combined with the styles is that much of the social studies of science
organic model and the strategy of risk-taking in literature have emphasized concrete categories
explaining differences in innovation rates (Hage, rather than general dimensions that would allow
1999). Finally, as argued previously, the organic one to accumulate evidence about how best to
model is not designed to handle the varying sizes manage research. For example, the outcomes
of units in which research is conducted, from of research are typically measured in concrete
the very small project within an organization to categories, such as papers, patents, peer review
the very large mission agencies such as NOAA assessments, and citations. As we discuss below,
and NASA or a research consortium such as SE- we propose a reconceptualization of these ideas
MATECH (Browning, 1995) or various strategic so that they can be used as general dimensions,
alliances (Gomes-Casseres, 1996). such as the degree of radicalness of the outcome of
More recently, the importance of both the orga- the research or the scope of the research outcome,
nizational learning perspective (Grant, 1996; Kim that can be applied to basic or applied research,