Research Social Innovation Monitor Limburg 2012

2012 – This report presents the results of a research in 340 organisations in de Dutch provinceLimburg. It is executed by the Network Social Innovation (NSI) of theMaastrichtUniversitySchoolof Business & Economics (SBE), in cooperation with the Limburg Employment Society (LES).

NSI and LES aim to give an impulse to optimize social innovation through a yearly report and analysis on how work place innovation  develops in time including the influence of the company’s sector and size. NSI defines ‘sociale innovatie’ (work place innovation) as renewing organisations and new ways of working  that result in better development and utilization of the employee competences and applies the following  indicators for social innovation: strategic orientation, internal speed of change, internal flexibility/internal innovation capability, talent development, knowledge base investments and sustainable employability.

The first measurement of the Social Innovation Monitor Limburg shows that organisations inLimburghave a reasonable high score on the six social innovation indicators with an increasing focus on work place innovation to strengthen their competitive position. The highest scores are on strategic orientation, internal flexibility and sustainable employability! Notable is that non commercial service providers have less willingness to invest in their knowledge base than commercial service providers and the industrial sector. Both talent development and knowledge base investments have a lower average score over all companies.

There are also clear differences between the three distinguished sectors where many industrial companies are not yet able to change their internal innovation capacity on a relatively short term. In order to change this, industrial companies need to pay more attention for the possibilities to decentralise decision competency, individual scheduling and flexible working hours. The monitor shows that the organisational size hardly has an influence on the six indicators. The conclusion can be drawn that the largest obstacle for successful Work place Innovation is the lack of internal innovation capacity. It appears that smaller organisations can establish internal changes faster where most large industrial companies need to find approaches to enhance their internal capacity to chance rapidly.

Refence: Rutten, Tim, Thomas Thijssens, Bert van Landeghem, Marion Sumpf, Lex Borghans, Anita van Gils, Andries de Grip en Paul Iske, (2012)Sociale Innovatie Monitor Limburg 2012. NSI –NetworkSocialInnovationSchoolof Business andEconomicsMaastrichtUniversity.

Besides this research two articles from the daily magazine “The Limburger” are included. The tittles are: “The argumentation: Reintegration should stand high on theLimburgagenda (08/2012)”, and “The opinion: Only knowledge sharing can make innovation a success (04/2013)”. Both written by the debate group NSI University of Maastricht.

The first article has a focus on initiatives like the Chemelot Campus and argues that the Dutchprovince of Limburg made good steps on the innovation area. Combined with a lot of attention to attraction and retain well employable and highly educated people. But the lower educated individuals can not be forgotten ifLimburgwants to develop into a top region. Their reintegration in the labour process has a positive effect on the whole region  it is not only a social point of view.

The labour participation and mental employability of lower educated people and physical disabled people needs to be increased. To reduce the possible arguments of entrepreneurs, consultants can facilitate the access to the hidden labour potential of this group. Challenges on all levels of theLimburglabour market can only be overcome when serious attempts are made for reintegration.

The second article has also a focus on the Chemelot Campus which has a mayor influence for the economy ofLimburg. This campus distinguishes from regular business areas by it’s open innovation via public private cooperation. Successful campuses abroad show that further steps are necessary to fully apply the chances. This article focuses on the four steps to success: further increase of scale, diversity and investments. As well as retain the connection with the area and successful knowledge sharing.

Themes: Sustainable Work;  Dynamic management and Leadership; Co-creation; Innovative capacity; Talent development  Monitoring & Evaluation.