Industrial Design and Business Performance: A case study of design management in a Finnish fashion firm (Acta Universitatis Oeconomicae Helsingiensis)

Ainamo, Antti

With its practice-based roots, design has long been a special field of interest in managerial study. It is the part of product developn1ent that focuses on "learning by doing" at the interface of the product and the product user (Nelson 1993, Rosenberg 1994). Literature concerning the design performance relationship has en1phasised either the instant, direct, positive and intentional effects of design on perfom1ance or the dysfunctional effects of such slack resources on organizational adaptability. The first stream of literature has mostly relied on cross-sectional population-level analysis and quantitative correlations between variables, the other on longitudinal studies. The basic theoretical ideas to con1bine the foregoing two streams of literature are presented in behaviorally oriented theories . This study includes a single case study. .The purpose of the case study is to describe how design and performance combine, as well as understand the underlying organizational and managerial processes.

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