Is innovation always beneficial? A meta-analysis of the relationship between innovation and performance in SMEs

The performance implications of innovation in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have attracted considerable interest among academics and practitioners. However, empirical research on the innovation-performance relationship in SMEs shows controversial results. This meta-analysis synthesizes empirical findings in order to obtain evidence whether and especially under which circumstances smaller, resource-scarce firms benefit from innovation. We find that innovation-performance relationship is context dependent. Factors such as the age of the firm, the type of innovation, and the cultural context affect the impact of innovation on firm performance to a large extent.

Journal or Publication:
Journal of Business Venturing
Rosenbusch, Nina
Jan Brinckmann
Bausch, Andreas
Year Published
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