If innovation is business gold, how can it be encouraged? An alumna of Reading's doctoral economics programme, Dr Shamsa Al Sheibani investigates what attracts and what may deter this elusive asset.
In her research, Shamsa examined the universal pursuit of innovation. What does this intangible quality mean to business? Is it the key to such fundamental goals as creating new approaches, goods, production and markets?
The Reading alumna focused her investigation on British and Omani small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). She researched both differences and similarities in these companies' methods, inspiration and pursuit of innovation.
"My research was in the area of Applied Economics/ Development Economics. It employs both quantitative and qualitative approaches to investigate what determines and deters Innovation in the British and the Omani Small and Medium-size Enterprises (SMEs) in the 1990s and 2010s. The study compares the impact of firm characteristics, firm behavior and business environment of approximately 18K SMEs on different types of innovations: product, services, operational, organisational or managerial and marketing methods in the British and Omani SMEs."
Shamsa's study followed existing British Surveys on SMEs and developed a new dataset for the Omani SMEs. One of the important aspects of her research design is that her findings on innovation among British SMEs has implications for innovation among Omani ones.