Exploring The Mediating Role of Intrinsic Motivation Between Innovation Support and Innovative Behavior: An Empirical Study Based on a Design Thinking Course


  • Hong Chen
  • Xie Chen
  • Younghwan Pan


innovation support; innovative behavior; intrinsic motivation; mediator


Establishing a culture of innovation is complex and demands more than simply urging students to be creative. It requires a comprehensive support system encompassing resources, leadership, training, and an environment that fosters and sustains innovative behavior. The purpose of this research is to investigate the way in which innovation support impacts the innovative behavior of university students. Additionally, it aims to explore the role of intrinsic motivation in mediating the relationship between innovation support (including emotional, interpersonal, and resource support) and innovative behavior within the context of a design thinking course. The study presents a conceptual model that examines the causal link between innovation support and innovative behavior, as well as the mediating role of intrinsic motivation, to test hypotheses regarding the connections among innovation support, innovative behavior, and intrinsic motivation. The research was conducted using an online survey and snowball sampling technique, which resulted in the collection of 234 questionnaires from four universities in China. The collected data were analyzed using structural equation modelling. The results indicate that all three types of innovation support have a significant impact on students’ innovative behavior. Furthermore, the research reveals that intrinsic motivation plays a mediating role between the three types of innovation support and innovative behavior. These findings have both theoretical and practical implications for universities seeking to foster students' creative thinking and innovative behavior. Additionally, future research can further explore ways in which universities can effectively cultivate a culture of innovation through strong support systems and by harnessing intrinsic motivation.



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