INNOVATING THROUGH EFFECTIVE GLOBAL PARTNERSHIPS

Problem

  • Find out the best ways to advance scientific breakthroughs

  • Discover how scientists and engineers from an industrial research lab and world-class universities build effective partnerships together

Action

  • Used interviews, documents, social-network surveys, observations, and systems-dynamics modeling techniques to understand the partnership life cycle

  • Created, tested, and patented a model of relationship effectiveness
    (No. 7,280,977, 10/9/07)

Solution

  • Developed a set of current best practices for developing and maintaining strong and productive relationships between the partners

  • Published an edited volume on partnering

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ENHANCING
USER-ORIENTED DESIGN

Problem

Determine the most appropriate workspace for industrial researchers

  • Discover whether this workspace is suitable both cross-culturally and for younger research professionals

Action

  • Combined qualitative and quantitative methods to build a model of researcher workspace that maximized productivity

  • Learned that private offices improved concentration for "heads-down" work and enabled small-group and virtual collaborations without disturbing others

Solution

  • Recommended an exception for industrial researchers to the corporate trend for cubicles

  • Advised that researchers be assigned private offices to improve their productivity and partnering effectiveness; single offices were subsequently built in domestic and international locations

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