Interorganizational collaboration and firm innovativeness: Unpacking the role of the organizational environment
In firm decisions to engage in interorganizational collaboration in the context of innovation, conceptions of the organizational environment play an essential role. In this paper, we develop a multidimensional model of how managers use interorganizational collaboration as an organizational response to particular environmental conditions and an important instrument to boost firm innovativeness. Based on a literature review on the subject, we investigated the role of environmental turbulence, market heterogeneity and competitive intensity as such conditions. The analysis of firm data from a broad range of industries showed that environmental turbulence and market heterogeneity have an indirect association with firm innovativeness through interorganizational collaboration. The relationship of market heterogeneity was fully mediated suggesting that collaboration is unavoidable for firms in heterogeneous markets. Contrary to arguments in the literature, the findings demonstrated that although competitive intensity is associated with less interorganizational collaboration and lower firm innovativeness, the mediation relationship was not significant.