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Innovation Insights from North American Forest Sector Research: A Literature Review

Department of Wood Science and Engineering, College of Forestry, Oregon State University, 119 Richardson Hall, Corvallis 97331, OR, USA
Norwegian Forest and Landscape Institute, Postbox 115, 1431 Ås, Norway
Northland College, Ashland 54806, WI, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2014, 5(6), 1341-1355;
Received: 11 April 2014 / Revised: 24 May 2014 / Accepted: 5 June 2014 / Published: 12 June 2014
The promise of increased industry competitiveness through innovation has driven interest in innovation by industry managers, policy makers and academicians. Forest sector researchers have produced a strong body of work in recent years. This article provides a review of work originating in North America during the period 2000–2013. The review includes 28 journal articles focused on the forest sector in the U.S. and Canada. Seven important themes from the literature are identified and discussed: defining innovation and innovativeness; measuring innovativeness; factors influencing innovativeness; new product development; climate/culture; innovation systems; and innovativeness and firm performance. The positive culture and climate within a company has a clear connection to improved innovativeness and firm performance. Generally, findings describing the culture of the forest sector show a conservative group that fails to sufficiently invest in innovativeness and innovation. Culture change presents a significant opportunity within the industry to strive toward the improved development of new products, processes and business systems to reap the rewards of improved performance. The implications for managers and researchers are outlined. View Full-Text
Keywords: innovation; innovativeness; forest industry; forest sector innovation; innovativeness; forest industry; forest sector
MDPI and ACS Style

Hansen, E.; Nybakk, E.; Panwar, R. Innovation Insights from North American Forest Sector Research: A Literature Review. Forests 2014, 5, 1341-1355.

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