Switch to English
Cursus: 201500087
HRM and Innovation
Cursus informatie
Studiepunten (ECTS)5
Contactpersoondr. A.C. Bos - Nehles
dr. A.C. Bos - Nehles
Contactpersoon van de cursus
dr. A.C. Bos - Nehles
AanmeldingsprocedureZelf aanmelden via OSIRIS Student
Inschrijven via OSIRISJa
After completing this course master students are expected to be able to:
  1. Critically reflect on the utility of social exchange theory, intellectual capital theory and climate theories to explain the relationship between human resource management and different forms of innovation;
  2. Discuss the ways in which organizations can stimulate the innovative work behavior of employees;
  3. Discuss the ways in which organizations and employees innovate human resource management systems;
  4. Examine the influence of human resource management systems on different forms of innovation in a qualitative way;
  5. Discuss the practical and theoretical implications of research results on HRM and innovation to provide recommendations for future research and practice.
Students are also expected to continue training their skills to formulate rigorous and relevant research questions; interview business representatives; analyze qualitative data for answering research questions; provide recommendations for future research and practice; and to work in project teams.
Innovation is the cornerstone of many economies and societies. Furthermore, being innovative is crucial for businesses to gain a competitive advantage in the contemporary economy. Therefore, firms are all looking for the holy grail of innovation by searching for means to create new products and services before competitors even thought of it. Since employees are the ones who create new ideas and translate them into innovative products/services, both researchers and practitioners agree that employees are at the root of a firm’s innovation success. As such, they are seeking for (new) human resource management initiatives that foster innovation at different levels in organizations. One example is Google’s famous “20 percent projects” that allow employees to spend 20% of their time on projects of their own interests. This way, Google taps into the knowledge, skills, and abilities of its employees and facilitates the development of new ideas. Given the important role of employees in innovation processes, it is a necessity for HR and line managers to know how to stimulate innovative employee behaviors and how to manage people in organizations with the use of HRM practices.
In this course, we invite students to engage in the quest to better understand how firms can make their workforces more innovative with the use of human resource management. As such, this course challenges you to think about questions such as: how does training lead to more and better innovative ideas; what type of recruitment and selection practices do organizations need to attract innovative talent; or, how can employees be motivated to create new ideas? Asking these questions yet only contributes to improving the innovation performance of firms if one is capable of findings answers to them and turning those into practical recommendations. Therefore, besides providing knowledge on HRM and innovation interfaces, this course puts particular emphasis on helping students to improve their skills to analyze quantitative and qualitative data for answering research questions. Ultimately, this prepares them for the data analysis stage in their master thesis research and enables them to provide recommendations on how real-life firms can improve their innovation performance.
In this course, we discuss the reciprocal relationships between human resource management, such as selection, training or development actions, and innovation. On the one hand, it focuses on how HRM and employee attributes affect different forms of innovation and on the other, how different organizational actors innovate HRM. In doing so, it challenges students to think about questions like which HRM practices make organizations ambidextrous, why does HRM affect performance (e.g. by building strong organizational climates, advancing knowledge resources or by developing strong social exchange relations with employees), does creativity require other HRM instruments than idea implementation, and in which way do employees gear changes in HRM practices? Ultimately, this trains students to empirically examine the relationship between HRM and innovation. In total, seven topics will be discussed:
  1. HRM and innovative work behavior of employees
  2. The effect of individual versus bundles of HRM practices on innovation performance
  3. HRM and ambidexterity
  4. Line manager behavior and climate for innovation
  5. Innovator role adoption
  6. Conceptualizing, operationalizing, and measuring theoretical concepts in HRM – innovation research
Students are expected to join the course if they are competent in basic HRM foci: integrating three primarily HRM sub-fields (work design and workforce planning, management of employee competences and management of employees’ behaviours and attitudes). Further, they are expected to have basic knowledge of innovation concepts such as incremental versus radical innovation.
Participating study
Master Business Administration
Participating study
Master Educational Science and Technology
Verplicht materiaal
Aanbevolen materiaal

Overig onderwijs



Assignment and final assignment/paper

Individual final assignment (70%), Group assignment 30%)

Switch to English