Decision Making and Behavioral Strategy: The role of regulatory focus in corporate innovation processes Defended on Friday, 17 October 2014

This dissertation makes use of the behavioral strategy perspective in order to examine a number of constructs pertaining to innovation in corporate settings. In particular, the dissertation consists of four studies; one conceptual and three empirical. The conceptual paper introduces the regulatory focus theory and forms a linkage between an individual’s regulatory focus and motivation towards exploration and exploitation. Furthermore, by means of the Motivation-Ability-Opportunity (MAO) schema, this study also provides insight into the concepts moderating this relationship. The first empirical paper tests the relationship between an individual’s (i.e. manager’s) regulatory focus and activities of exploration and exploitation. Moreover, it takes an initial step in understanding the organizational and contextual antecedents of regulatory focus, and thus, of exploration and exploitation at the individual level. The second empirical study, examines the collective regulatory focus of a management team, and its effects on the exploratory innovation level of the organization unit. Moreover, it investigates three primary organizational coordination mechanisms (i.e. centralization, formalization and connectedness) as a mediator of this relationship. Finally, the last study addresses the gap regarding the lack of knowledge about the positive effects of prevention focus in organizational settings. All in all, the contributions and findings of this study have a number of implications for behavioral strategy theory and practice, and presents areas of future research.


Behavioral Strategy, Regulatory focus, Promotion, Prevention, Exploration, Exploitation, Innovation

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