M-Lab joined Dauphine Recherches en Management in 2009 in the form of a cross-cutting project. Since then, M-Lab has become a DRM unit in its own right and has taken on a significant role. The team has enjoyed substantial growth over the last five years. In 2016, a recruitment phase saw the total number of members rise to 10, of whom 7 were employed by Université Paris-Dauphine. The latest member to join, in 2016, is a CNRS researcher assigned to DRM. Three team members employed by Dauphine as well as two associate researchers are qualified to supervise doctoral research.
Although all team members share an interest in management innovation, the positioning of their research allows them to stand out, and it is this that brings them together. This positioning can be described as follows:
The expansion of the team, which was just starting out, made it necessary to put in place spaces for interaction and more systematic mechanisms for coordination. The most important change for the team over this period was the systematisation of its operational methods. Team members interact in many different ways, including discussions, meetings and various initiatives: doctoral workshops (once monthly; each session looks at the progress of a doctoral researcher’s thesis), support sessions on writing articles (2 or 3 times a year; an article currently being drafted or already submitted is reworked collectively), brainstorming sessions (these are irregular and improvised, whereby a researcher in the team looks to his or her colleagues for responses to a particular idea), and meetings to discuss management and the life of the team. More recently, we introduced “flash meetings” which last just 20 minutes and may be held in the corridor or in front of an office. These address a very specific subject and are announced in advance (for example the team’s web page, reorganising the doctoral researchers’ office, etc.).
At the same time as its expansion, the team managed to develop or integrate an ecosystem built around the central theme of innovation in management. This takes the form of one key initiative: the development of and participation in the Circle of Innovation at Université Paris-Dauphine. This is an important aspect of the team’s ecosystem. It brings together research and teaching staff as well as partner firms to design and oversee original research programmes addressing innovation issues and process the results together. The Circle runs a seminar on “Innovating in management”, with regular participation from M-Lab members.