Building constructive innovation networks : role of relationship management
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In response to the growing demands for innovation, networked arrangements that draw together and synthesize the knowledge resources of multiple organizations and sectors have come to the fore-front within the construction arena. Because they are based on a relational governance principal, these new arrangements require management strategies and techniques that may not be synonymous with conventional approaches. Drawing on the Cooperative Research Centre for Construction Innovation as an example of an interorganizational innovation network, this case study examines its formation and operation to determine the role that relational governance plays in these new arrangements and to provide insights into the relationship-based management strategies employed. The case study indicates that although a mix of governance modes supplements the relational approach, network management remains a critical, if often overlooked, function. Based on the findings, a preliminary relationship management framework is presented as well as some key lessons for those responsible for the architecture, operation, and administration of these innovation networks.
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