Inderscience Publishers

Promoting network-based organisational innovations: a new approach in Finnish labour and technology policies

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During the 1990s, many European companies successfully renewed their work organisations. Many recent commentators have nevertheless seen the slow spread of organisational process innovations among European companies as one of the key reasons for the poor performance of European countries in global competition. A problem identified in a number of countries is the weakness of the development infrastructure in this "grey area" lying between the traditional areas of labour and technology policy. This paper examines the Finnish National Workplace Development Program (1996), one of the aims of which is to promote the development, experimentation and spread of organisational innovations in working life. The program pursues this objective by supporting networking between companies and reinforcing the infrastructure for the development of work organisation. The paper looks at the programme strategy and provides an introduction to project activity within the programme, while also examining the role of government in the development of work organisation.

Keywords: work organisation, organisational innovation, company network, technology policy

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