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Drivers for agility in times of crisis

Marte C.W. Solheim (Stavanger Centre for Innovation Research, University of Stavanger Business School, Stavanger, Norway)
Torgeir Aadland (Department of Industrial Economics and Technology Management, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway)
Ann Elida Eide (Department of Industrial Economics and Technology Management, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway)
Dag Håkon Haneberg (Department of Industrial Economics and Technology Management, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway)

European Business Review

ISSN: 0955-534X

Article publication date: 13 September 2022

Issue publication date: 2 January 2023

249

Abstract

Purpose

Agile organisations do not arise from a single characteristic but comprise a combination of various aspects. Thus, this study aims to examine the combined effects on organisational agility regarding firms’ utilisation of digital technology to create value during the COVID-19 pandemic, how firms perceive uncertainty related to their own organisational response and the degree to which they have an entrepreneurial mindset.

Design/methodology/approach

Using a fuzzy-set qualitative comparative analysis, this study investigates 355 established firms and start-ups in Norway.

Findings

This study finds digitalisation is required for agility to develop, but that it needs to be combined with having an entrepreneurial mindset or being a start-up and lower levels of perceived uncertainty. Hence, entrepreneurial mindset and low uncertainty are important factors for digitalisation, and in turn, for agility to be developed.

Originality/value

Agility is recognised as being pivotal for firms’ competitiveness and innovation and argued to be significant in overcoming sudden economic shocks. However, lacking empirical scrutiny are investigations into the relationship between digitalisation and agility, and how digitalisation might act as a driver for building agility, which the authors tackle herein.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors are grateful for funding received by Innovation Norway for the project entitled “Innovation in times of crisis”. This project investigates the effects of COVID-19 on innovation in Norway.

Innovation Norway.

Citation

Solheim, M.C.W., Aadland, T., Eide, A.E. and Haneberg, D.H. (2023), "Drivers for agility in times of crisis", European Business Review, Vol. 35 No. 1, pp. 57-73. https://doi.org/10.1108/EBR-01-2022-0014

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

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