Innovation for Nonprofit Organisations


Innovation involves the introduction of new ideas, methods or products; it can also comprise changes to existing ways of how things are made or done. With globalisation and an increasingly digital economy today, it has become one of the core drivers of performance and growth for organisations. Many leaders have recognised the importance of fostering innovation and are implementing strategies to encourage a creative culture in their organisations.

This is a selection of resources on innovation for nonprofit organisations available from the NLB catalogue or the Internet. It is not meant to be an exhaustive list.


Search Terms Call Number
Personal innovation 650.1
Management of nonprofit organisations 658, 658.1
Organisational Innovation 658.4



  • Bilton, C., & Cummings, S. (Eds.). (2014). Handbook of management and creativity. Cheltenham, U.K.: Edward Elgar Publishing.
    Call number: RBUS 658.4063 HAN
    This handbook presents a comprehensive collection of research on the subject of creativity, examining why and how it is important to organisations and their management. It also looks at how creativity can be managed and identifies some of the challenges and issues associated with implementing innovation in organisations.


  • Brinckerhoff, P. C. (2012). Smart stewardship for nonprofits: Making the right decisions in good times and bad. New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons.
    Call number: RBUS 658.159 BRI
    Written for board members and top executives of nonprofit organisations, Smart Stewardship for Nonprofits is a guide on top-level decision-making in nonprofits, providing practical frameworks and tools which are useful for making decisions during good times and adverse situations, and when establishing an innovative culture.


  • De Beule, F. & Nauwelaerts, Y. (Eds.). (2013). Innovation and creativity: Pillars of the future global economy. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.
    Call number: RBUS 658.4063 INN
    Innovation and Creativity explores the importance of innovation and creativity in building competitiveness in the future global economy. Through the perspectives of various contributors, it studies the management of innovation and creativity in European countries as well as multinational companies to find out how organisations can innovate efficiently and effectively.


  • Dodgson, M., Gann, D. M. & Phillips, N. (Eds.). (2015). The Oxford handbook of innovation management. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
    Call number: RBUS 658.406 OXF
    In The Oxford Handbook of Innovation, 49 leading academics provide their perspectives on the importance of innovation for economic and business competitiveness and for the quality and standard of living around the world. They also offer their insights on how innovation can be managed in terms of managing research and development, innovation in business models, and open and social innovation.


  • Gailly, B. (2011). Developing innovative organisations: A roadmap to boost your innovation potential. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
    Call number: RBUS 658.4063 GAI
    This book takes a look at what innovation is, why it is essential, and how it can be implemented and managed to bring benefits to the organisations. It features a roadmap which can be used to identify and develop the capabilities which are needed for the effective management of innovation and case studies of how international companies have successfully developed innovative environments.


  • Ott, J. S. & Dicke, L. A. (Eds.). (2016). Understanding nonprofit organisations: Governance, leadership, and management. Colorado: Westview Press.
    Call number: RBUS 658.048 UND
    The governing, leading and managing of nonprofit organisations are explored over 10 chapters in Understanding Nonprofit Organisations, which provides a comprehensive coverage of topics related to the management of the social sector, including corporate governance and boards, strategic leadership, innovation and capacity, fund development, and partnerships and collaborations.


  • Seelos, C. & Mair, J. (2017). Innovation and scaling for impact: How effective social enterprises do it. California: Stanford Business Books.
    Call number: RBUS 658.4063 SEE
    In this book, authors Seelos and Mair examine research and studies to find out how organisations in the social sector can create value by balancing innovation and scale. Besides this, they also provide four detailed case studies of high-impact nonprofit organisations to illustrate innovation archetypes which can successfully balance innovation and scale to achieve impact and success.


  • Tidd, J. & Bessant, J. (2013). Managing innovation: Integrating technological, market and organisational change. West Sussex: John Wiley & Sons.
    Call number: RBUS 658.514 TID
    Managing Innovation details the management of innovation at the operational and strategic levels, focusing on the integration and management of technological, market and organisational changes to enhance the competitiveness and effectiveness of organisations in today’s knowledge economy.



  • Burt, T. (2015). 2020 vision: Today’s business leaders on tomorrow’s world. London: Elliot & Thompson. Retrieved from OverDrive.
    2020 Vision is a compilation of the views and visions of twenty business leaders from various industries on what they think the world and the market would look like in 2020. They also share their insights on how they will prepare for and adapt to long-term change in the face of globalisation, innovation and disruptive technology, and political developments.


  • Davila, T., et al. (2014). The innovation paradox: Why good businesses kill breakthroughs and how they can change. San Francisco: Berrett- Koehler Publishers. Retrieved from ProQuest Ebook Central.
    In The Innovation Paradox, the authors discuss why established companies seldom come up with major innovations despite massive efforts and funding put into research and development, suggesting that the challenges lie within the structures in these companies that had led to their successes in the first place. Through the Startup Corporation model, they also explain how companies can be structured to encourage innovation and breakthrough.


  • DeSai, J. (2013). Innovation engine: Driving execution for breakthrough results. New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons. Retrieved from ProQuest Ebook Central.
    The execution of organisational innovation is detailed in this ebook, which offers guidance for leaders and management teams on how innovation can be implemented and sustained, and utilised to improve employee motivation and engagement. In addition, it covers how strategies, roadmaps and processes for innovation execution can be developed.


  • Deschamps, J. & Beebe, N. (2014). Innovation governance: How top management organises and mobilises for innovation. California: Jossey-Bass. Retrieved from ProQuest Ebook Central.
    This ebook is a detailed guide on innovation governance for business leaders, including board members top-level and senior management. It covers concepts such as the different models of innovation governance and their strengths and weaknesses, and practical information such as how governance processes can be evaluated and improved.


  • Grant, A. & Grant, G. (2016). The innovation race: How to change a culture to change the game. Milton: John Wiley and Sons. Retrieved from OverDrive.
    The Innovation Race explores the current state of innovation and outlines some challenges which can impact innovation. It also provides practical strategies and tools to support purpose-driven sustainable innovation through deep cultural transformation in organisations to achieve long term success.


  • Larry, K. Nagji, B. & Walters, H. (2013). Ten types of innovation: The discipline of building breakthroughs. New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons. Retrieved from ProQuest Ebook Central.
    The authors of this ebook attempt to shed light on the topic of innovation by analysing over 2000 successful innovations with an algorithm for categorisation into ten groups, termed the ten types of innovation. Via their analysis, they also identify the opportunities in innovation and share how sustainable innovation can be implemented in organisations.


  • Nordgern, C. (2016). Becoming a creative genius {again}. Durham: Torchflame Books. Retrieved from OverDrive.
    Becoming a Creative Genius {again} presents the perspective that people are all born with creativity and entrepreneurial skills, and explains how everyone can re-ignite our innate creativity and bring out our most entrepreneurial selves. It also provides lessons and exercises to help people rediscover and rekindle their creativity and entrepreneurial spirit.


  • Talukder, M. (2014). Managing innovation adoption: From innovation to implementation. Surrey: Routledge. Retrieved from ProQuest Ebook Central.
    Why do some organisations succeed in innovation, while others struggle with its implementation? This ebook explores the topic of management of innovation from the bottom-up, looking at how the lack of understanding and acceptance by employees can influence the adoption of innovation in an organisation. It also provides a framework which can be used to gain a better understanding of how employees adopt and use innovation in organisations.



  • Beck, J. (2016, July 30). What does an innovative board look like- Value creating. Retrieved June 23, 2017, from Better Boards Conference 2016 website:
    In his plenary session conducted during the Better Boards Conference 2016, speaker James Beck presented on innovation in the context of non-profit organisations, with a focus on the roles in which boards play to foster innovation in their organisations, and how board members can contribute to innovation. His presentation materials can be accessed from the link provided.


  • Chamorro-Premuzic, T. (2017, May 23). How to work with innovation killers. Retrieved June 23, 2017, from Forbes website:
    How can leaders and employees alike work with “innovation killers” in their organisations to implement innovative ideas? The author of this Forbes article describes four ways, based on common traits observed in change resistors, which can be used to persuade and convince them to buy in to and work with others on innovations in the organisation.


  • Deloitte & Board Network. (2016, February). Radical innovation and growth- Global Board Survey 2016. Retrieved June 23, 2017, from Deloitte website:
    The Global Board Survey 2016 gathered insights from 614 board professionals from 50 countries to shed light on how corporate boards around the world address and work with radical innovation. The results showed that while corporate boards are starting to act in the overseeing of innovation in their companies, many still lack an understanding of innovation and how to manage and develop it.


  • Deschamps, J. (2013, May 21). Governing innovation in practice- The role of the board of directors. Retrieved June 23, 2017, from website:
    This article, written by a professor specialising in the field of technology and innovation management, details the role of the board of directors and the top management in governing innovation in an organisation. In particular, it focuses on five aspects in the governance duties of the board and explains how each can be used to manage organisational innovation.


  • Lead Director Network. (2017, April 20). The board’s role in overseeing innovation. Retrieved June 23, 2017, from King & Spalding website:
    This report provides a summary of the discussion between members of the Lead Director Network on the topic of how boards can oversee innovations more effectively. It covers insights including when and where boards should engage in corporate innovation, and concrete steps which boards can take to better oversee innovation.


  • Satell, G. (2017, June 21). The 4 types of innovation and the problems they solve. Retrieved June 23, 2017, from Harvard Business Review website:
    In this article, author Greg Satell explores the concept that innovation can occur in various ways because it solves different problems. He suggests that organisations fail to innovate, or sustain innovation, because they are often fixated on one type of strategy which may not suit the problems they are trying to solve. He also shared an Innovation Matrix to help organisations identify the appropriate type of strategy to solve a problem.


Accessing National Library Board Singapore Resources

Accessing the Print Materials

You can search the library catalogue (for physical materials) in the library and from home ( The easy search function allows you to search/browse by author, title, keyword, subject and ISBN/ISSN whereas the advanced search allows you to narrow your searches to specific media types or language holdings. In both instances, you will also be able to limit your search to specific libraries by clicking on the “limit by branch” option.

To search Lee Kong Chian Reference Library’s Holdings

If you wish to search for only materials available in the Lee Kong Chian Reference Library, please always click on the “Limit by Branch” button at the bottom of the page, after you have keyed in your search term. This brings you to a new page whereby you will be able to select the library of your choice. Choose “Lee Kong Chian Reference Library” and select “yes” under the “Display only items available in the selected branch below” and then click on search.

Things to note:

Once you have identified the title that you need, please double-check the following information and write down the necessary info:

i. The “Status” of the item: the item is not available in the library, if the status displayed is “in transit”, “in process” or “not ready for loan”.

ii. Double-check that the item is in Lee Kong Chian Reference Library under “Branch”.

iii. Write down the Location Code and the Call Number of the item. This helps you to locate the item within Lee Kong Chian Reference Library. Please refer to the table below for more information (Note: Please feel free to approach the counter staff for help in locating the books.)

All featured books and periodicals are located at the Lee Kong Chian Reference Library.


Accessing the Databases

The National Library Board (NLB)’s eResources are free for all NLB members. Click here to find out how to register as a member.

If you’re having problems registering or logging in, please contact us. If you wish to find information in the databases but am not sure where to begin, or need recommendations on which databases to use, please use the “Ask A Librarian” function or send an email to for help. The librarian will get back to you within three working days.



Goh Lee Kim


The information in this resource guide is valid as at July 2017 and correct as far as we are able to ascertain from our sources. It is not intended to be an exhaustive or complete history on the subject. Please contact the Library for further reading materials on the topic.

All Rights Reserved. National Library Board Singapore 2017.


Written by Lee Kim Goh