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May 10 , 2010

The Management Idea Factory

Innovation and Commodification in Management Consulting


Although there has traditionally been considerable field-level attention on how consultants market their ideas and practices, there is still a lack of research that discusses the earlier intra-organizational phases in the development process. While the present literature provides important insights that enhance our understanding of consulting, the consultancy industry, and the way that consultants present their ideas and services on the market for management solutions, we know relatively little about the way knowledge-based innovations develop within consultancy firms and the mechanisms that shape the intra-organizational evolution of these ideas and practices.

This book seeks to address this gap by revealing how the development of new ideas and practices takes shape in consultancies. The work addresses questions such as: In which way do consultancies sense the contemporary market needs? How do new ideas and practices become established within a consultancy? How do consultancies seek to maintain their repertoire? And what role do these new ideas and practices play in their assignments? To provide more insight into these different aspects of knowledge-based innovation in consultancies, the book draws on and integrates literature from diverse relevant fields such as product innovation and market orientation, but also uses institutional and practice-based perspectives. The research presented in this book can be seen in the light of emerging research into ‘knowledge-based innovation’ and ‘new concept development’ that concentrate on empirically studying how knowledge entrepreneurs seek to develop commercially viable ideas and practices that have the potential to have a significant impact on management and organizational praxis.

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