Innovation of construction in the Dutch railways: Lessons from inter-organizational co-operation

Bas van der Veen, Hans Voordijk, André Dorée

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Traditionally innovation in the construction industry is analysed at an industry-level. This results in generalist observations on the low level of innovation when compared to other industries and the identification of factors that, on industry level, hamper innovation. With these factors in mind and having established a diagnosis on this level, numerous scholars, policy-makers and managers alike have prescribed therapies attempting to cure the industry as a whole. The case of the Dutch railways shows us that it is trust and loyalty between the people involved, their willingness to share knowledge and their entrepreneurship that made this inter-organizational co-operation function in such a way that innovation became possible. Trust, loyalty and entrepreneurship are primarily about people; not about organizations or about 'the industry'. The Industrial Network Approach which explicitly identifies actor bonds as an essential part of an interfirm network, and the recognition of (emotional) trust as the essential factor for creating and maintaining such bonds, give us the concepts and frameworks to see and understand these phenomena.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationARCOM Seventeenth Annual Conference 2001
Subtitle of host publication5-7 September 2001 University of Salford
EditorsAkintola Akintoye
Place of PublicationReading, UK
PublisherAssociation of Researchers in Construction Management (ARCOM)
Number of pages9
ISBN (Print)0-9534161-6X
Publication statusPublished - 5 Sep 2001
Event17th Annual ARCOM Conference 2001 - Salford, United Kingdom
Duration: 5 Sep 20017 Sep 2001
Conference number: 17


Conference17th Annual ARCOM Conference 2001
Abbreviated titleARCOM 2001
CountryUnited Kingdom


  • METIS-200245
  • IR-86024


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