Posted: February 22nd, 2022
Please note that the essay should be 1500 words and not 1800. 1. Firstly, choose an individual that you have access to, with whom you can talk about innovating. Unless you are interviewing a family member who is in your household bubble , it is expected that you conduct your interview online using a platform such as Zoom , Teams or Skype. You may already know them, be referred to them by someone else (a network), they could be a family member or you could approach someone directly by reaching out to them online or by phone. They may have developed an innovative product, service or process. They can be from any type of organisation from private to public or not-for-profit. [Note: this step for some is the most challenging, try to be creative in finding someone to interview, you can also seek help from your seminar tutor and module leader]. Remember an innovator is not just someone who comes up with a shiny new product or service, they can also be innovating in their job, such as a librarian, nurse or a sports club leader, you could also speak to someone from your recent internship. You could interview someone who runs your local café, sports facilities, hairdressers or nursery…these are just a few suggestions. If you absolutely cannot find someone to interview, then you could use a YouTube interview or an autobiography as an alternative to gather data but these will not give you the same experience (remember to cite your sources if you are not conducting your own interview). 2. Secondly, design your interview instrument, what questions do you want answered? For example; could you follow Tidd & Bessant’s (2018) framework: Search, Select, Implement and Capture? If they run an organisation, you could bring in aspects on if they have created an organisation that is supportive of innovation and creativity and in what way? (E.g. In terms of the structure, culture, leadership). What is their innovation strategy? What challenges have they met on their innovation journey and how have they managed these? (Again this is not an exhaustive list). Choose the innovation topic areas that interest you to explore. Word count is short, so you cannot cover everything, mention in your introduction the areas your essay will focus on. 3. Conduct the interview. It may be a 20 mins interview or it may last an hour. Your challenge is to identify the most useful aspects of the interview to include in your essay. A useful source to consult prior to your interview is; Cope, J. (2005) Researching entrepreneurship through phenomenological inquiry: Philosophical and methodological issues, International Small Business Journal, Vol.23, Iss.2, pp.163-189. You can also now automatically transcribe your interview using Word in the MS Office 365 available to you to use as a student. You may need to edit your transcription to fix any inaccurate translation from voice to text. 4. Critically analyse the data collected from the interview in relation to theory on innovation management, and reflect on the evidence provided by your innovator. An exemplar will be provided of a previous interview for your guidance. The challenge here is that you have 1,500 words, therefore need to write concisely, choosing relevant points to discuss and so you cannot cover everything. It is better to cover a few areas and bring in depth of critical discussion alongside literature, for example one or two stages in their innovation process, how they select ideas, collaborate/open innovation, capture value etc. This is your essay and each student could provide a different slant on the areas they will cover. It is important to outline your focus in your introduction, make it interesting for the reader. NB. It is encouraged that you provide some direct quotes from your interview in your essay. 7. Provide a clear statement about the format of the interview e.g. this essay is based on a 35 minute long interview conducted online with [interviewee name/role/organisation as appropriate]. Please note that future audits may result in you being requested to provide this evidence. 8. Ensure that you have considered the ethical implications of your interview. To do this, provide written or oral explanation of the study to the interviewee in advance of the interview. Make sure the interviewee is aware of the purpose of the interview, that they can withdraw at any time and that they will be kept anonymous (if preferred – and you can use a fictitious name for the individual/organisation) and their responses to the questions will be held in confidence. Caution should be taken if interviewing vulnerable groups or children and if so, please contact the module leader to check if an ethics application is required. 9. It is an essay, so there should be no contents page or headings included 10. Include your word count on your cover sheet. Notes: • Harvard referencing must be used. • Do not write in the first person (i.e. avoid I, we). • Formal writing should be used i.e. avoid the use of don’t (use do not), can’t (use cannot); and so on. • Avoid words like huge, massive, exceptional they do not add anything and lack precision. Avoid using ‘recent’. • If you use a quote from literature, comment on it, integrate it into your discussion remembering to cite it properly. It is encouraged that you use direct quotes from your interview. • Critical discussion means instead of describing something, comment on it, words like ‘however’, ‘although’ can help. Are there limitations? What does it really mean? • It is an essay, therefore a contents page or executive summary is not required
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