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Organized Innovation: A Framework for Effectively Managing Innovation

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2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Seattle, Washington

Publication Date

June 14, 2015

Start Date

June 14, 2015

End Date

June 17, 2015





Conference Session

Engineering Management Division Technical Session 3

Tagged Division

Engineering Management

Page Count


Page Numbers

26.1211.1 - 26.1211.41



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Paper Authors


Sara Jansen Perry Baylor University

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Sara Jansen Perry is an assistant professor of management in the Hankamer School of Business at Baylor University. She teaches organizational behavior and human resource management courses, including negotiation and principles of management. She earned her PhD in 2009 from the University of Houston in Industrial-Organizational Psychology, also earning the Meredith P. Crawford fellowship in I-O Psychology from HumRRO that year. In the 2013-14 academic year, she held the Professional Land Management (PLM) endowed professorship at the University of Houston-Downtown. Sara conducts research in innovation, leadership, and stress-related topics.

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Emily M Hunter Baylor University

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Emily M. Hunter, Assistant Professor of Management in the Hankamer School of Business at Baylor University, earned her Ph.D. in Industrial-Organizational Psychology at the University of Houston in 2009. She teaches negotiation and conducts research on work-family conflict, employee deviance and servant leadership.

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Steven C. Currall University of California, Davis

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Steve Currall is the Chancellor’s Advisor and Professor of Management at the University of California, Davis. As Chancellor’s Advisor, he is leading the process for creating a new UC Davis campus in the Sacramento region to advance the university’s public policy, education, business, and outreach programs. He also serves as Chief Strategic Advisor, and member of the Executive Committee and Board of Directors, for the ten-campus University of California Global Health Institute. He previously served for five years as the Dean of the Graduate School of Management at UC Davis. A behavioral scientist, Currall has conducted research and taught for over 25 years on organizational psychology topics such as innovation, emerging technologies, negotiation, and corporate governance. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

At the invitation of the U.S. President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, Currall was a member of the Nanotechnology Technical Advisory Group. He has been a grantee on $21,533,893 in external funding of which over 78% came from refereed research grants from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and National Institutes of Health. Currall was lead author of a book on university-business-government collaboration entitled, Organized Innovation: A Blueprint for Renewing America’s Prosperity (Oxford University Press, 2014). Based on a study funded by the NSF, the book is the culmination of a 10-year research project on interdisciplinary research involving science, engineering, and medicine. He has served as a member of editorial review boards such as Academy of Management Review, Academy of Management Journal, and Organization Science.

In addition to positions in schools of management, he has served in engineering schools as vice dean, department chair, and endowed chair holder; he has also held faculty appointments in a Department of Psychology and in a Department of Statistics. He was formerly Vice Dean of Enterprise and Professor of Management Science and Innovation in the Faculty of Engineering Sciences at University College London (UCL). He was Visiting Professor of Organisational Behaviour and Entrepreneurship at London Business School. At UCL, he was founding Chair of the Department of Management Science and Innovation. In 2003, he was a Visiting Scholar at the University of Chicago's Booth School of Business.

At Rice University, Currall was the William and Stephanie Sick Professor of Entrepreneurship in the Brown School of Engineering and tenured Associate Professor of Management, Psychology, and Statistics in the Jones Graduate School of Management. He was Founding Director of the Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship, which is a Rice University education and research center that is a partnership of the Schools of Engineering, Management and Natural Sciences. During Currall's five-year tenure leading the Alliance, it assisted in the launch of over 160 technology start-up companies, which raised in excess of $300,000,000 in equity capital. Currall also founded the Rice University Business Plan Competition, which involved the largest number of competing universities (36) and richest prize money ($325,000) of any graduate student business plan competition in the world.

Currall received Stanford University's Price Foundation Innovative Entrepreneurship Educator Award, Ernst & Young's regional Entrepreneur of the Year Award®, and the Grand Velocity Award for Academic Entrepreneurship, Indiana University. He has advised organizations such as Schlumberger, BMC Software, BP, and Shell. He has been quoted over 600 times in publications such as the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Financial Times, Business Week, British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) television, and the Nightly Business Report. He earned a Ph.D. from Cornell University, a M.Sc. from the London School of Economics and Political Science (as a Rotary International Scholar), and a B.A. (cum laude) from Baylor University.

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Ed Frauenheim The Great Place to Work Institute

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Ed Frauenheim has been a writer, editor and commentator for nearly 20 years. He has focused on the intersection of work, technology and society. He is co-author of two books: Good Company: Business Success in the Worthiness Era and Organized Innovation: A Blueprint for Renewing America's Prosperity. Ed currently is an editor at the Great Place to Work Institute, which works to improve society by transforming workplaces. Prior to this role, he has been a journalist at publications including Workforce magazine, CNET and The Oakland Tribune. He has contributed articles to publications including Wired,, The San Jose Mercury News, The San Diego Union-Tribune and The Seattle Times.

Ed’s stories have earned honors from American Business Media, the American Society of Business Publication Editors, the Associated Press News Executive Council of California and Nevada, and the Northern California Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. In addition, Good Company earned the 2012 Gold Nautilus Book Award in the Business/Leadership category.

Ed has spoken to live and broadcast audiences on subjects including corporate social responsibility, management and technology.

Along with Organized Innovation co-authors Sara Jansen Perry and Emily M. Hunter, Ed delivered a day-long workshop on the principles of the book to affiliates of the Baylor Research and Innovation Collaborative at Baylor University.

Ed graduated cum laude from Princeton University with a degree in History. He earned a Master’s Degree in Education from the University of California at Berkeley.

Ed lives in San Francisco with his wife and two kids.

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Organized Innovation 1  Organized Innovation: A Framework for Effectively Managing InnovationThe future of American innovation leadership is not as certain as in the past. Notably, China hasdominated in recent years (e.g., increased patent filings by 24 percent in 2012, compared to only7.8 percent in the US; World Intellectual Property Organization, 2013). One solution is toincrease understanding about the best way to manage innovation efforts. To that end, we offer atheoretical framework, Organized Innovation, which is based on our decade-long qualitative andquantitative research on National Science Foundation (NSF) Engineering Research Centers(ERCs). The framework is focused on what research leaders can do to create organizationalconditions ripe for innovation success. We organize our prescriptions into three pillars:Channeled Curiosity, Boundary-Breaking Collaboration, and Orchestrated Commercialization.We highlight five principles for achieving Channeled Curiosity: lead with vision, planstrategically, pursue technology platforms, synthesize solutions, and persist. Six principles mayhelp leaders implement Boundary-Breaking Collaboration: lead through persuasion and trust,create interdependence, promote collaboration across disciplines, connect with industry, linkuniversities, and seek active dialogue with government representatives. Finally, just as strategyimplementation is notoriously difficult and often poorly executed, commercialization can be adifficult process (Ramanujam et al., 1986). We propose six principles to help leaders betterOrchestrate Commercialization: coordinate the network, elevate role models, revisit incentives,appoint an industrial liaison officer, improve technology transfer execution, and bring inentrepreneurial and business expertise. By implementing these evidence-based managementpractices, we suggest that leaders can orient basic research toward developing ambitioustechnology platforms that can have practical application, foster collaboration spanning traditionalsilos, and facilitate a smooth commercialization process that includes all relevant players. Our Organized Innovation 2 results show building an organizational culture around these principles can have a dramaticimpact on technology transfer outputs. We also propose seven questions for future research toencourage further work in this important area.

Perry, S. J., & Hunter, E. M., & Currall, S. C., & Frauenheim, E. (2015, June), Organized Innovation: A Framework for Effectively Managing Innovation Paper presented at 2015 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Seattle, Washington. 10.18260/p.24548

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