I recently interviewed Helena Santos Rodrigues at the Business Innovation Conference in Chicago. Helena is from Portugal and works at the Polytechnical Institute Viana Do Castelo in the northern part of Portugal. She has a PhD who is starting her research for her post PhD on the issue of intellectual capital and innovativeness of the firm.
She has been working on the influence of intellectual capital on the innovativeness of the firm. She focuses on the 3 components of intellectual capital:
1. Human Capital,
2. Structural Capital and
3. Relational Capital.
She connects them with product, process and the management innovativeness.
Helena found that human and structural capital are directly and positively connected with product process and innovativeness. She also found that structural capital is connected with management innovativeness.
Helena’s latest research was conducted in northern Portugal and Spain within the automotive sector. This is important because the automotive industry is important to the world.
Helena found that firms may achieve advantage from the intellectual capital perspective and can improve product, process and management innovativeness at the same firm. She thinks further research should focus on supply chain management. The supply chain needs to be split and research should be done on which intellectual capital improvements could be important. The areas need to be identified and then managed. There should be an understanding on how they influence and support the innovativeness of the firm.
Recommendations for supply chain professionals
In terms of intellectual capital and innovativeness you can see which parts of the supply chain influence the final innovativeness. In terms of intellectual capital we can analyze and see the results.
Intellectual capital is important for innovativeness. However, some aspects are more important. Firstly, human and relational capital: human capital deals with knowledge assets and relational capital deals with relations outside the firm. All of these are important for innovativeness, product and process.
Helena’s research showed that product and process innovativeness in the automotive sector are the same and truly connected. For example, when a new car is developed you have a new process. This is important because you need process and product innovation.
Also, structural capital is related to knowledge assets of the firm and is important for management innovativeness.
About Helena Santos Rodrigues