The Surprising Duality of Jugaad: Low Firm Growth and High Inclusive Growth
Dean A. Shepherd,
Vinit Parida and
Journal of Management Studies, 2020, vol. 57, issue 1, 87-128
Western theories on creativity emphasize the importance of access to resources and the generation of innovations as a source of sustainable competitive advantage for firms. However, perhaps the emphasis on slack resources and the firm as the level of analysis may be less appropriate for understanding the benefits of individual creative problem solving in resource‐poor environments of the east; focusing solely on the firm is not sufficiently inclusive and may underestimate the benefits of creative problem solving under resource scarcity. Through an inductive interpretive case study of 12 problem solvers in the highly resource‐poor environment of rural India, we identified the antecedents, dimensions and duality of outcomes for an Indian cultural source of creative problem solving called jugaad. Jugaad relies on assertive defiance, trial‐and‐error experiential learning and the recombination of available resources to improvise a frugal quick‐fix solution. Our inductive framework provides new insights into the dual outcomes of creative problem solving from an eastern perspective; jugaad is unlikely to be a source of competitive advantage for firm growth but represents a source of enhanced wellbeing for inclusive growth.
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