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Enabling Dynamic Capability: Managing and Organizing for Change
Mälardalen University, School of Innovation, Design and Engineering.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-0468-8503
2024 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This doctoral thesis is based on a longitudinal single-case study conducted over five years within a product development context at a manufacturing company. In dynamic environments that demand flexibility and adaptability, it is essential to understand how organizations can improve dynamic capabilities to remain viable and competitive during periods of turbulence and change. This challenge is especially central to product development organizations offering customer-specific products as it tends to increase organizational complexity. An excessive focus on internal coordination and control to manage this complexity has led to inertia due to establishment of strict, rigid processes and hierarchical bureaucracies within organizational management and design.

This study aims to contribute with new knowledge on how organizations operating in dynamic contexts can develop adaptability to changing needs. Specifically, it seeks to understand how to design and manage organizations to increase their preparedness for and adaptability to change. Investigating the factors and mechanisms that influence an organization's dynamic capability can provide insights into the sources of inertia and support the transition toward a more dynamic structure. The longitudinal study is based on data collected through an initial interview study followed by a questionnaire study, and finally through a concluding interview study. The research has been phenomenon-driven; as the organization’s circumstances have evolved, the focus of the study has shifted accordingly. Emerging from the aggregated results of the longitudinal study, the overall scope of the research is the change process, transitioning from a rigid to a more dynamic organization. Research findings are presented in five appended papers.

Analysis from literature studies and the empirical study show that the primary focus on improving performance often centers on internal efficiency. However, within the case company, tension arose between the desire of strict control according to predefined processes and plans and the actual need for flexibility. Dynamic contexts require working processes that facilitate reactive problem-solving, creativity, and flexibility, as well as managers capable of going back and forth between management styles to benefit performance. Successful organizational reconfiguration depends on developing the conditions that enable the firm's dynamic capability in relation to its context. This involves identifying both the microfoundations that generate dynamic capability and the internal and external constraints to change.

Considering the external environment is crucial for developing an understanding of how to best organize and manage resources and capabilities, which places demands on managerial capabilities. Managers must possess the skills to monitor the external environment and formulate strategies to respond to changing conditions, as their interpretation of the external environment will influence their decisions, which will subsequently enable or hinder possible actions. The design of organizations will impact the ability to rearrange resources and capabilities. Processes and working procedures must allow for reconfigurations to respond swiftly to changing constraints or opportunities. The use of multiple theoretical perspectives has been imperative in the analysis of the data, and the theoretical contribution extends to exploration of various factors and mechanisms that influence an organization's dynamic capability.  

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Eskilstuna: Mälardalens universitet, 2024.
Series
Mälardalen University Press Dissertations, ISSN 1651-4238 ; 410
Keywords [en]
Dynamic capability, Product development, Organizational design, Case study
National Category
Mechanical Engineering Economics and Business
Research subject
Innovation and Design
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-67032ISBN: 978-91-7485-653-8 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mdh-67032DiVA, id: diva2:1862986
Public defence
2024-09-13, C3-003, Mälardalens universitet, Eskilstuna, 09:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2024-06-26 Created: 2024-05-30 Last updated: 2024-06-27Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Linking development efficiency, effectiveness, and process improvements
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Linking development efficiency, effectiveness, and process improvements
2014 (English)In: Tools and Methods of Competitive Engineering 2014 TMCE 2014, 2014Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-25179 (URN)
Conference
Tools and Methods of Competitive Engineering 2014 TMCE 2014, 19-23 May 2014, Budapest, Hungary
Projects
INNOFACTURE - innovative manufacturing development
Available from: 2014-06-05 Created: 2014-06-05 Last updated: 2024-05-30Bibliographically approved
2. Rethinking effectiveness: Addressing managerial paradoxes by using a process perspective on effectiveness
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Rethinking effectiveness: Addressing managerial paradoxes by using a process perspective on effectiveness
2014 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-27494 (URN)
Conference
21st EurOMA Conference, June 20-25, Palermo, Italy
Projects
INNOFACTURE - innovative manufacturing development
Available from: 2015-02-10 Created: 2015-02-10 Last updated: 2024-05-30Bibliographically approved
3. Exploring tensions between creativity and control in product development projects
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Exploring tensions between creativity and control in product development projects
2015 (English)In: DS 80-3 PROCEEDINGS OF THE 20TH INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON ENGINEERING DESIGN (ICED 15): VOL 3: ORGANISATION AND MANAGEMENT, 2015Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

To sustain organizational performance in dynamic contexts, organizations must be able to change through innovation while still continuing to perform in the short term. Central to successful innovation is to understand and manage tensions, paradoxes, contradictions, and dilemmas. This paper will present empirical data from a single case study discussed in relation to institutional theory in connection to organizational tensions and conflicts. Results show examples of a strong focus on proactive approaches with attempts to control and manage product development projects in a strict manner, even though the organization is acting in a context characterized by uncertainty with a need for creativity and a reactive approach. This shows a lacking understanding of what is required of the project process in this context and the tensions created between the strict process control and the dynamic environment. Conclusions point at the need for both creativity and control in the management of product development projects. However, there is a risk of strong institutions preventing organizations from recognizing the need for change.

Keywords
Organisation of product development; Project management; Creativity; Control
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-27495 (URN)000366981200025 ()2-s2.0-84979900414 (Scopus ID)978-1-904670-66-7 (ISBN)
Conference
20th International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED)
Projects
INNOFACTURE - innovative manufacturing development
Available from: 2015-02-10 Created: 2015-02-10 Last updated: 2024-05-30Bibliographically approved
4. Exploring microfoundations of dynamic capabilities – challenges, barriers, and enablers of organizational change
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Exploring microfoundations of dynamic capabilities – challenges, barriers, and enablers of organizational change
2020 (English)In: Journal of Organizational Change Management, ISSN 0953-4814, E-ISSN 1758-7816, Vol. 34, no 1, p. 206-222Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose: The purpose of this study is to identify factors affecting an organization’s dynamic capability and, consequently, its ability to manage organizational change. Design/methodology/approach: A single case study was conducted to provide a deeper understanding of the situation that the case company experienced during a specific phase of reconfiguration. Data were collected through nine in-depth, semi-structured interviews and analyzed using the Gioia methodology. Findings: Challenges, barriers and enablers affecting the organization's dynamic capability in the reconfiguration phase were identified. Originality/value: This study contributes to the theory of dynamic capabilities and to the current investigatory stream regarding microfoundations by presenting practical examples of challenges, barriers and enablers that affect an organization’s ability to succeed during an organizational reconfiguration. These examples are intended to aid in discussions on microfoundations of dynamic capabilities and their impact in practice. 

Keywords
Dynamic capability; Gioia methodology; Microfoundations; Organization design; Organizational change; Product development
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-52540 (URN)10.1108/JOCM-02-2020-0060 (DOI)000596400000001 ()2-s2.0-85097097268 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2020-11-11 Created: 2020-11-11 Last updated: 2024-05-30Bibliographically approved
5. Understanding the Role of Organizational Design in Fostering Long-Term Dynamic Capabilities: a Longitudinal Case Study
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Understanding the Role of Organizational Design in Fostering Long-Term Dynamic Capabilities: a Longitudinal Case Study
2024 (English)In: International Journal of Organizational Analysis, ISSN 1934-8835, E-ISSN 1758-8561Article in journal (Refereed) Accepted
National Category
Other Social Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-67022 (URN)10.1108/IJOA-07-2023-3861 (DOI)001241806000001 ()2-s2.0-85195592811 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2024-05-30 Created: 2024-05-30 Last updated: 2024-06-19Bibliographically approved

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1234564 of 6
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