Association between innovation competences and competitiveness in the brazilian electromedical device industry

Abstract The aim of this article is to investigate the existence of a causal relationship between innovation competences and competitiveness in electromedical device manufacturers operating in Brazil. A survey was conducted in 2015 with 34 companies, and the data gathered were analyzed qualitatively and quantitatively. Innovation competences were addressed from two perspectives. In the first, the capacity to follow, predict, and act on market developments was the best developed capability, while the capacity to sell new products was the least developed. In the second, technical competences were found to be better developed than relational and organizational ones. Concerning competitiveness, fewer than half the respondents reported improved performance in at least one of the seven indicators evaluated. Considering the two variables together, no statistical correlation was found between innovation competences and competitiveness using Spearman’s Rank-Order Correlation Test. As such, the competitiveness of the companies from the sample under study was understood as being more strongly associated to their commercial performance, itself affected by their capacity to fulfill regulatory requirements.