Exploring the diffusion of innovation among high and low innovative localities : A test of the Berry and Berry model

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)95-125
Journal / PublicationPublic Management Review
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2011
Externally publishedYes


Berry and Berry (1999, 2007) argue that diffusion of policy innovations is driven by learning, competition, public pressure or mandates from higher levels of authority. We undertake a first time analysis of thiswhole framework and present three sub-studies of innovation. First, we examine the drivers of total innovation. Second, we assess whether the factors influencing the most innovative localities are similar to or different from the factors impacting the low localities. Finally, we disaggregate total innovation into three different innovation types. Our findings, undertaken on a panel of English local governments over four years, reveal that amajority of the diffusion drivers from innovation and diffusion theory are indeed positively significant for total innovation. However, local authorities that adopt higher and lower levels of innovation than predicted do things differently while the framework has limited applicability to types of management innovation. We concluded that the Berry and Berry model is best suited to the analysis of total innovation, but not as well suited to the analysis of different types of innovation. We also outline a research agenda that might better explain the diffusion of public policy and public management innovation types than is captured by current literature. © 2011 Taylor & Francis.

Research Area(s)

  • Diffusion, Empirical, High and low innovation localities, Innovation