Organizational learning, innovation types and sustainability performance: Testing a multiple-mediator model

Freddie Lwanga, Michael Korir, Ronald Bonuke, Johnson Ssekakubo


Abstract Existing studies attest to the mediating role of innovation, but less is known about which specific type of innovation matters in the manufacturing context of a developing country. This study unpacks the construct of innovation and tests the mediating effect of product, process, and management system innovation types in the relationship between organizational learning and sustainability performance. A structured questionnaire was used to collect cross-sectional survey data from the managerial staff of 256 medium and large manufacturing firms in Uganda. Hayes’s PROCESS macro (Version 4.0) through Model 4 was used to carry out a multiple-mediation analysis. Findings revealed that organizational learning, product innovation, and process innovation have a positive direct effect on sustainability performance. Only product and process innovations partially mediate the relationship between organizational learning and sustainability performance. The findings of this study validated the dynamic capability theory by demonstrating that the effect of organizational learning on sustainability performance can be partially conveyed through product and process innovation. Drawing on this empirical evidence, industry policymakers and managers of medium and large manufacturing firms seeking to improve sustainability performance need to adopt strategies that simultaneously support organizational learning and innovations in products and processes.

Keywords: Sustainability Performance, Organisational Learning Process, Product Innovation, Process Innovation, Uganda Manufacturing Firms

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[ISSN 1821-7567 (Print)  & eISSN 2591-6947 (Online)]