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Measuring Innovation Ability of the Taiwanese Food Company Using Data Envelopment Analysis
According to prior researches the ability of companies to meet consumer expectations depends deeply on their ability to innovate and deliver new products at competitive prices. Innovation is a cross-functional process that includes two types of innovation: technical and non-technical. Especially the second type is expected to be more important in low- and medium-technology industries (LMT), such as food industry. However, most researches so far focused on Research and Development (R&D) and high technology industries. There is one study that has focused on agrifood industry - the Wageningen Innovation Assessment Tool (WIAT), which assesses the success possibility of an innovation projects. We, on the other hand, want to study the innovativeness of a whole company, not focusing on specific projects only, therefore the scope of our research is broader than WIAT.Innovation is a key driver to achieve sustainable competitive advantage and, however there is still no agreement on how to measure it (Fortuin et al., 2007). Our researched was designed to be suitable for Taiwanese food industry and use a questionnaire to get data. To define the key factors we first perform literature review and then ask food industry experts to choose which of the factors are the most important. These Key Success Factors (KSFs) are later determined to design a questionnaire for the Taiwanese food industry. From the questionnaire we get the data that is then analyzed with the Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA), using the Frontier Analysis software.Based on the analysis we can observe which companies used in the research are most innovative and which are the least. We can also propose strategies how to improve the innovation ability by assessing the differences between the best and the worst companies. Also, we will check our DEA results, consulting the food industry experts and by visiting the food companies, to ensure the robustness of our research.We expect this research to contribute in four ways. Firstly, we will find a set of key success factors for innovation ability for Taiwanese food industry. Secondly, using the DEA we will find out outstanding examples from the researched industry which can be used as a benchmark by other companies. Thirdly, we will propose innovativeness improvement strategies to the food industry in Taiwan. And finally, other food companies not included in the survey will be able to use our method to compare its innovativeness with the benchmark set by this study.
根據前人的研究，企業在滿足消費者期望時，將仰賴其創新與提供有競爭力價格的商品。創新是一個橫跨職能的過程，其中包括兩種創新的類型：技術和非技術。尤其是在第二種類型將是被看重在低與中等的技術產業（LMT）的，如：食品業。然而，過去研究多著重在研發（R&D）和高科技產業，但the Wageningen Innovation Assessment Tool (WIAT)是以農業食品為對象所開發出來的軟體，因此本研究將以此軟體開發的概念，應用於本研究中，來協助與評估農業食品公司在創新方面的表現。具體而言，本研究將了解與評定農業食品公司的創新能力。創新是可促使企業實現可持續性的競爭優勢關鍵，但目前仍未找到一套大家公認的衡量規準(Fortuin et al., 2007)。本研究透過文獻的蒐集以及食品業的專家訪談，來列出農業食品產業的創新關鍵因素。再將這些創新關鍵因素發展為問卷，並將農業食品業的相關產官學研來填寫此份問卷。本研究將所搜集回來的問卷，將使用Frontier Analysis軟體，來輔助本研究所選擇的分析方法─資料包絡分析法(DEA)之分析。進而萃取出農業食品業創新關鍵成功因素。根據本研究的分析結果，可發現所蒐集的企業在創新的應用多寡。本研究亦可根據結果提出在創新能力表現較佳與較差的企業之改善策略。此外，本研究亦根據分析結果，再次訪問表現能力較佳與較差的食品公司，以確認本研究結果之可靠性。本研究貢獻有四：一為，找出台灣食品業的創新關鍵成功因素；二為，應用資料包絡分析法找出本研究所蒐集的企業中的標竿企業，進而做為未來需改善的企業學習的對象；三為，提出改善台灣食品業的創新策略；最後，食品產業中的各個公司，也可以根據本研究的方法來比較自身與同業公司的創新能力。
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