Ralph Katz

Senior Lecturer, Technological Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Strategic Management


Ralph Katz Ralph Katz is a Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship Management at Northeastern University's College of Business. For more than 30 years, Katz has been carrying out extensive management research, education, and consulting on technology-based innovation, with a particular interest in the management and motivation of technical professionals and high-performing groups and project teams.

Katz has conducted numerous workshops and seminars on innovation and R&D management type topics for technical staff professionals, managers, and senior executives in many organizations, working with them to improve their management and leadership of technical environments and innovation practices and processes. Among his more recent clients are major industrial corporations, including Dupont; Motorola; Procter and Gamble; Lockheed Martin; Sparta; Goodrich; National Semiconductor; EMC; Nokia; Vancity Cooperative Bank; the CIA; Tetra Pak; Master Foods, Inc.; Ciba Specialty Chemicals; and the Lawrence Livermore and Los Alamos National Laboratories.

He teaches in two MIT Sloan executive programs and also leads the Management of Technology and Innovation executive program at Cal Tech. For more than 10 years, he led the Management of Technology and Technical Professionals courses at IBM's Corporate Technical Institute. Katz has taught in the executive programs of many other universities and was a visiting scholar at INSEAD in Paris during the 2003-04 academic year. His most recent book is The Human Side of Managing Technological Innovation, second edition (Oxford University Press, 2004).

In 1981, Katz was awarded the New Concept Award by the National Academy of Management for that year's Most Outstanding Contribution to the Field of Organizational Behavior. He was also the 1986 recipient of R&D Management Journal's Best Paper Award and the 1990 and 1991 recipient of the Academy of Management TIM Division's Best Paper Awards. In 2004, his paper in the IRI-sponsored journal, Research-Technology Management, was selected as the Holland Award Winner for that year's most significant and original contribution to the field of research management.

Katz serves on many journal editorial boards and was the R&D/Innovation and Entrepreneurship departmental editor for Management Science from 1991 to 2001. He holds a BS in math and physics from Carnegie Mellon University and an MBA and a PhD from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School.

Faculty Media

  • Healthcare.gov: A Management Issue

    Much of the blame around the Healthcare.gov website—a web-based insurance marketplace established by the 2010 Affordable Healthcare Act—has focused on the fact that the site couldn't handle the...

  • Q&A with the Faculty of Managing Technical Professionals and Organizations

    This course addresses how the challenges and goals faced by technical professionals differ from other employees in an organization. What are the most important differences? What are some of the...

  • Anticipating Disruptive Innovation

    Organizations in today’s hyper-competitive world face the paradoxical challenges of “dualism,” that is, functioning efficiently today while innovating effectively for tomorrow.

  • Shifting Innovation to Users Via Toolkits

    Research has consistently shown that new products and services must accurately respond to user needs if they are to succeed in the marketplace. However, it is often a very costly matter for firms...

  • Project Performance and the Locus of Influence in the R&D Matrix

    This study examines the relationship between R&D project performance and the relative influence of project and functional managers across 86 matrixed teams.


Contact Information

Office: NE25-757
Phone: 617-253-5085
Email: rkatz@mit.edu
Support Staff

Teaches In

Building, Leading, and Sustaining the Innovative Organization Oct 12-13, 2017 | Apr 12-13, 2018 | Oct 1-2, 2018

Managing Technical Professionals and Organizations Oct 10-11, 2017 | Apr 5-6, 2018 | Jun 21-22, 2018 | Nov 1-2, 2018