The Impact of Training on Innovation

[We’re pleased to welcome author Benoit Dostie of HEC Montréal. Benoit recently published an article in the ILR Review entitled The Impact of Training on Innovation. Below, Benoit discusses the inspiration for this research, along with the applied methodology:]

The positive impact of firm-sponsored training on workers’ wages and productivity is well documented. At the same time, many studies are highlighting innovation as an important component of firms’ performance.

This paper ILR_72ppiRGB_powerpoint.jpglinks these two ideas and investigates whether firms who invest more in training their workers reap reward through better innovation performance. Bauernschuster, Falck, and Heblich (2009) argue that continuous training guarantees access to leading-edge knowledge and thus increase a firm’s propensity to innovate. In fact, lack of skill within the enterprise is one of the two most frequently reported obstacles to innovation amongst Canadian firms (Statistics Canada (2012)).

To do so, we use longitudinal Canadian linked employer-employee data from 1999-2006 and look at two types of human capital investments, the number of employees who received classroom and on-the-job training; and four measures of innovation: improved and new processes, improved and ne
w products.

Our results show that more training leads to more product and process innovation, with on-the-job training playing a role that is as important as classroom training. These results are important because many policies used by governments throughout the world to encourage firms to invest more in training put more weight toward more formal or structured forms of training like classroom training.

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This entry was posted in Creativity and Innovation, High performance work systems, Innovation, Uncategorized by Cynthia Nalevanko, Senior Editor, SAGE Publishing. Bookmark the permalink.

About Cynthia Nalevanko, Senior Editor, SAGE Publishing

Founded in 1965, SAGE is the world’s leading independent academic and professional publisher. Known for our commitment to quality and innovation, SAGE has helped inform and educate a global community of scholars, practitioners, researchers, and students across a broad range of subject areas. With over 1500 employees globally from principal offices in Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, Singapore, Washington DC, and Melburne, our publishing program includes more than 1000 journals and over 900 books, reference works and databases a year in business, humanities, social sciences, science, technology and medicine. Believing passionately that engaged scholarship lies at the heart of any healthy society and that education is intrinsically valuable, SAGE aims to be the world’s leading independent academic and professional publisher. This means playing a creative role in society by disseminating teaching and research on a global scale, the cornerstones of which are good, long-term relationships, a focus on our markets, and an ability to combine quality and innovation. Leading authors, editors and societies should feel that SAGE is their natural home: we believe in meeting the range of their needs, and in publishing the best of their work. We are a growing company, and our financial success comes from thinking creatively about our markets and actively responding to the needs of our customers.

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