Innovation Management in outsourced railway maintenance: the case of a Dutch railway service provider

S.K. Wu*, A.J.J. Braaksma, Leo A.M. van Dongen

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterAcademicpeer-review

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    Purpose: Despite a complex, fragmented and from origin conservative environment, railway service provider organizations in the Dutch railways are innovating at a high pace. Therefore, the Dutch railway maintenance sector is a rich environment for studying innovations. To understand how this is achieved, an innovation management framework is developed and used to analyze innovation factors within a Dutch railway service provider.

    Design/methodology/approach: Based on a literature review on conceptual frameworks for innovation management of the last five years, an holistic innovation management framework is constructed, using an inductive coding methodology. The holistic innovation management framework is used to analyze the case study organization, based on interviews and desk research.

    Findings: The analysis indicates that various market, organization, process, and product/service factors and their interaction contribute to a high pace of innovations.

    Research limitations/implications: The coding methodology used in this study can be influenced by researcher’s bias. In addition, the generalizability of this study is limited due to a single case study. The presented research shows that the Dutch railway maintenance sector is a sector which deserves further research to learn from their innovative maintenance practices on a more detailed process level. In addition, the presented framework is a step towards an holistic innovation management framework which can be used to analyze innovations on a sectoral level.

    Practical implications: The research results gives practitioners insights on how to develop innovation management practices in the railway sector.

    Originality/value: This research presents an in-depth analysis on the innovation management practices that have been applied in the successful Dutch railway maintenance sector from the perspective of a railway service provider.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationTransportation Systems
    Subtitle of host publicationManaging Performance through Advanced Maintenance Engineering
    EditorsSarbjeet Singh, Alberto Martinetti, Arnab Majumdar, Leo A.M. van Dongen
    Place of PublicationSingapore
    Number of pages24
    ISBN (Electronic)978-981-32-9323-6
    ISBN (Print)978-981-32-9322-9
    Publication statusAccepted/In press - 24 Jan 2019

    Publication series

    NameAsset Analytics - Performance and Safety Management


    • Asset Management
    • Innovation management
    • Transportation
    • maintenance engineering


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