Infusion of intrapreneurial spirit has been recognized and embraced as an effective way of improving efficiency, accomplishing organizational goals and giving a better competitive posture in both profit and non profit making organisations. However, empirical evidence shows that many university libraries in Kenya have remained less intrapreneurial and the level of adoption of intrapreneurial activities remains unclear. The purpose of this study was to investigate the status of these activities and their determinants in selected university libraries in Kenya. The objectives of the study were to examine the individual staff factors, determine the internal organization factors and establish the external environmental conditions that determine intrapreneurial activities in university libraries in Kenya. The study used the explanatory and descriptive research design to examine the relationship between the variables. The study targeted two public and two private university libraries with a total of 162 library staff. A sample of 114 library staff was selected using proportionate stratified random sampling. A structured questionnaire and two interview guides were used to collect primary data from library staff, university librarians and university management staff respectively. Quantitative data was analysed using descriptive and inferential statistics, while thematic analysis was applied to analyse qualitative data. The study findings showed that although individual staff factors, internal organization factors and external environmental conditions had a positive correlation with intrapreneurial activities, individual staff factors had a stronger correlation with 63.9 percent compared to the other two variables. The regression analysis indicated that individual staff factors was a stronger predictor of intrapreneurial activities, followed by external environmental conditions, while internal organizational factors had no contribution. The study arrived at the conclusion that institutionalizing intrapreneurial activities, was a response strategy of adding value to library operations, empowering individual employees and leading the libraries to become more competitive. Individual staff factors had a strong contribution to intrapreneurial activities and hence the need for more supportive policies from university management. Internal organization factors were weak and did not contribute much to intrapreneurial activities, implying that university management should take the necessary measures to ensure that these factors do not negate the intrapreneurial spirit in the libraries. Although external environmental conditions contributed to intrapreneurial activities, university libraries should be more proactive and maintain a competitive posture inorder to remain relevant. Therefore, universities should focus more on younger members of library staff so that they model into intrapreneurial activities in their workplace. A review of the training programmes for library staff by the relevant authorities is necessary so as to infuse critical aspects of entrepreneurship. Universities should also ensure adequate and readily available funds to support staff idea/project development and implementation. Decision making in respective universities need to be devolved in order to give staff more freedom to make decisions on development and implementation of their ideas/projects without alot of bureaucracies.
CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION
Background to the Study
The infusion of entrepreneurial thinking through corporate structure has become an increasingly important concept to both private and public sector organizations including university libraries. Such organizations are trying to remain competitive and efficient in the rapidly changing global marketplace (Ahmad, Nasurdin & Zainal, 2011; Belousova, Gaily & Basso, 2010; Anu, 2007). Previous studies suggested that corporate entrepreneurship (CE) also referred to as intrapreneurship goes on inside any organization regardless of size or type and leads to innovative activities, including: new product development, process and service improvement (Karimi, Daryani & Rezvanfar, 2011; Ahmad et al.,2011; Antoncic & Hisrich, 2001). Intrapreneurship in this case is regarded as a concept linked to the entrepreneurial orientation in an established organization.
Antoncic (2007), further perceived intrapreneurship as a process by which individuals inside organizations pursue opportunities without regard to the resources they currently control by displaying emergent intentions and behaviors that deviate from the customary way of doing business. Intrapreneurship is therefore geared towards creating an entrepreneurship culture within an established organization such as a library. In addition CE is perceived to be a method which offers an organization a strategic option for refining its business concept, meeting changing customer needs and expectations, enhancing its competitive posture and improving organizational flexibility and reactivity (Urbano, Alvarez, & Turro, 2013).
Even though there is consensus in the literature that CE is multidimensional, there is still disagreement among scholars on the actual dimensions of the CE construct. According to Antoncic and Hisrich (2003); Dess, Ireland, Zahra, Floyd, Janney and Lane, (2003), the most frequently tested dimensions of intrapreneurship are; new venture and new business, risk taking, innovativeness, proactiveness, competitiveness and self renewal. Antoncic and Hisrich (2003), further argued that by analyzing, nurturing and advancing these dimensions, managers could make significant improvements in the performance of their organizations. However, it was noted that these intrapreneurship dimensions were associated with business firms in developed countries and their linkage with intrapreneurial activities in university libraries required further investigation.
With environments constantly changing and becoming more competitive, organizations including libraries have to be flexible, innovative and take advantage of emerging opportunities. CE has thus gained growing academic interest (Heilbrunn, 2008). Benefits associated with the CE process have been identified in the literature as: organizational survival, growth, profitability, renewal, vitality, implementation of novel ideas by employees and strategic value of organisations (Belousova et al., 2010), boosting the organisation’s overall performance and leading to considerable competitive advantage (Ayudurai & Sohail, 2005; Antoncic & Hisrich, 2001); diversified products markets and impressive financial results (Kuratko, Ireland & Hornsby, 2001). Although these findings were associated with business firms of the developed countries, observations based on various studies indicate that universities worldwide have also embraced these benefits by engaging in intrapreneurial activities as a reform agenda (Nafukho & Wawire, 2003; Williams, 2003 & Neal, 2001).
Likewise, university libraries in both public and private sectors are being encouraged to foster intrapreneurial behavior and innovativeness to ensure success of higher education sector. By becoming intrapreneurial, these libraries will also become more responsive to the changing economic, social and technological realities. Such expectations are expressed in the respective university policy documents, strategic plans and Commission for University Education (2013), guidelines and regulations in Kenya. Such a move was supported by Mamdouh (2005), who observed that although a lot of CE research has focused on business firms, literature in the non-profit sector has also recognized the existence of entrepreneurship as part of life or intrinsic force in this sector.