Introduction to the Special Issue

John A. Mathews*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Organizational innovation is now widely seen to be a major source of competitive advantage for firms, along with product and process innovation. One of the major intellectual sources for the current organizational upheavals, in which firms strive for some form of “international best practice,” is the sociotechnical systems tradition, which traces its roots back to innovations such as semi-autonomous work teams in manufacturing in the 1960s, associated with the work of the Tavistock Institute. An international Colloquium was staged in Melbourne, Australia, in May 1995, to explore the current relevance and contribution of STS ideas to organizational innovation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)487-496
Number of pages10
JournalHuman Relations
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes


  • integral organizational renewal
  • lean production
  • organizational innovation
  • sociotechnical systems


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