Bottom-linked innovation: Collaboration between middle managers and employees

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Employee-driven innovation is gaining ground as a strategy for developing sustainable organisations in the public and private sector. This type of innovation is characterised by active employee participation, and the bottom-up perspective is often emphasised. This article explores an issue that has hitherto been paid little explicit attention, namely collaboration between middle managers and employees in innovation processes. In contrast to most studies, middle managers and employees are here both subjects of explicit investigation. The collaboration processes explored in this article are termed ‘bottom-linked innovation’. The empirical analysis is based on an in-depth qualitative study of bottom-linked innovation in a public frontline institution in Denmark. By combining research on employee-driven innovation and middle management, the article offers new insights into such collaborative processes.
TidsskriftInternational Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management
Udgave nummer4/5
Sider (fra-til)511-525
Antal sider15
StatusUdgivet - jul. 2018

Bibliografisk note

Special issue on Employee-driven Innovation


  • Bottom-linked innovation
  • Employee driven innovation
  • Front-line organisation
  • Manager and employee collaboration
  • Middle management
  • Public sector
  • Social work middle management

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