The Elgar Companion to Innovation and Knowledge Creation
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The Elgar Companion to Innovation and Knowledge Creation

Edited by Harald Bathelt, Patrick Cohendet, Sebastian Henn and Laurent Simon

This unique Companion provides a comprehensive overview and critical evaluation of existing conceptualizations and new developments in innovation research. It draws on multiple perspectives of innovation, knowledge and creativity from economics, geography, history, management, political science and sociology. The Companion brings together leading scholars to reflect upon innovation as a concept (Part I), innovation and institutions (Part II), innovation and creativity (Part III), innovation, networking and communities (Part IV), innovation in permanent spatial settings (Part V), innovation in temporary, virtual and open settings (Part VI), innovation, entrepreneurship and market making (Part VII), and the governance and management of innovation (Part VIII).
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Chapter 13: Managing knowledge, creativity and innovation

Patrick Cohendet, Guy Parmentier and Laurent Simon


The place and role of managing creativity in organizations appears as a growing concern amongst scholars as well as practitioners. The aim of this chapter is to situate and analyze how managing creativity should fit into the organizational framework orchestrated by the interactions between the management of knowledge and the management of innovation. In this contribution, we question the traditional view that places creativity at the preliminary stage of the innovation process. Following pioneering works on the management of creativity, we suggest in the following that managing creativity is equivalent to managing ideas, and argue that the main theoretical obstacle is that at the present stage ideas are mostly “black boxes” in innovation theories. In an effort to “open this black box”, we come to the suggestion that a major change of perspective is needed in management: instead of viewing the management of ideas as an initial stage of the innovation process, we propose an integrated framework where the processes of ideation and innovation are not sequential but coupled, and where these strategic interactions are mediated by knowledge-management processes. Such a change of perspective suggests drastic impacts on the ways to manage organizations, which are discussed in the conclusion of this chapter.

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