The Intangible Role of ISO Certification in the Innovation Process

By Anne Maurand-Valet

The introduction of managerial standards, (or management system standards – MSS), within an organization represents a change which brings up questions regarding innovation: do MSS represent innovation and what innovation are they likely to bring about? Few works have studied the link between standards and innovation. If they present a certain consensus on the organizational effects, they are much more nuanced on the effects regarding innovation of the product, the market, or the process of production. The incremental dimension of the principle of continuous improvement linked with MSS, as well as the focus on the analysis of the processes, would not promote breakthrough innovations, but simply the improvements in routines. Besides, the effects of MSS cannot be isolated from the technical-scientific context and from the practice of the other quality tools in organizations. It makes it difficult to precisely assess the influence of MSS on innovation phenomena. JEL Codes : O13, M19


  • management system standards
  • forms of innovation
  • innovation context
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