Purpose – This editorial of the special issue of Measuring Business Excellence is devoted to introduce and discuss a knowledge‐based perspective of innovation and performance improvement in health care (HC). Design/methodology/approach – The approaches, evidences and insights discussed in this introduction are based on the discussion of the topics of the conference “International Forum on Knowledge Assets Dynamics” organised in June 2012 in Matera, Italy. After a brief analysis of the importance of the HC for research and practice related to the reform of HC sector that encompassed most OECD countries in the last 15 years and the diffusion of the new public management philosophy, the article presents a rationale explaining the roots and the meanings of a knowledge‐based perspective of innovation and performance improvement in HC. The model of the innovation cycle is introduced and discussed. Finally, the article provides an overview of the papers of the special issue. Findings – At the conference, leading experts discussed the importance of identifying and managing new key‐value drivers in order to face emergent competitive scenarios, and research and management practices for addressing complexity, uncertainty and changes of today's business landscape. This article as well as all the contributions to the special issue provide useful implications both for research and practice. In particular they support the analysis about the resources, the assets, the processes, the factors and the contingency conditions playing a role in determining the improvement of the innovative capacity and consequently the global performance of the HC organisations. Originality/value – This article – and the contributions to the special issue – deal with different aspects which are important in the discussion about how fostering innovation and performance improvement in HC organisations exploiting knowledge‐based factors. The articles also deal with the approaches, tools, methods and techniques that disentangle the mechanisms by which different knowledge‐based factors, separately or interdependently, contribute to improve HC organisations' innovation dynamics and organisational performance.
Measuring Business Excellence – Emerald Publishing
Published: Nov 9, 2012
Keywords: Performance improvement; Health care; Knowledge‐based innovation; Health services; Innovation