Innovative Forms of Organising in Europe and Japan

Andrew Pettigrew, Silvia Massini, Tsuyoshi Numagami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recent writing on contemporary organisations is suggestive of extensive moves to create more responsive and flexible firms. Such claims often rest on studies of exceptional organisations or atypical sectors. Drawing on large-scale surveys of organisational innovations in Europe and Japan, this paper finds widespread but not revolutionary change in terms of organisational structures, processes and boundaries. In comparing innovative forms of organising in 1992 and 1996, the survey results show some similarities in the direction of change between European and Japanese organisations but from different starting points. The pace of innovation is generally much faster in Europe than in Japan. This pattern of more incremental change in Japan and more radical change in Europe is overlaid by a tendency for firms in both regions to seek new forms of organising by simultaneously altering their structures, processes and boundaries. Managing such a complementary change agenda is creating real process challenges for European and Japanese organisations. © 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)259-273
Number of pages14
JournalEuropean Management Journal
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2000


  • Boundaries
  • Europe compared with Japan
  • Innovation
  • Organisational change
  • Processes
  • Structures


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