Purpose – The role of research and development (R&D) in a knowledge-based economy like Singapore is of paramount importance to the sustenance of its competitive advantage. R&D not only requires huge investments in time and capital but also in a committed pool of talent. The present study attempts to integrate both behavioural and relational perspectives using Bass’s Multi-Factor Leadership Theory and Liden and Maslyn’s Multi-Dimensional Model of Leader-Member Exchange (LMX) and test their applicability in determining employees’ innovativeness. Design/methodology/approach – Using the responses from 201 R&D professionals in Singapore, it is found that R&D superiors demonstrate predominantly transformational leadership but at lower frequency than observed in past studies. Practical implications arising from the findings for R&D managers, human resource managers, and training and education are discussed. Findings – The findings from hierarchical regression analysis reveal that transformational leadership has positive association with the dimensions of LMX as well as innovativeness. In contrast, transactional leadership has negative association with innovativeness. Originality/value – The paper offers insights into the effects of leadership and leader-member exchange on innovativeness.
- Research and development