Annabelle Gawer and Michael A. Cusumano
This chapter analyses the role that platforms can play in innovation, and their implications for innovation management. It offers a definition of the term ‘platform’, as well as a classification of different types of platforms (internal platforms, supply-chain platforms, and industry platforms). It highlights the fundamental economic and strategic concepts associated with platforms. The chapter clarifies the similarities and differences between the economic conception of platforms as double-sided markets subject to network effects and that of platforms that stimulate “open” innovation by complementors within innovative ecosystems. It also clarifies the role of technological architecture and interfaces in platform innovation. It also examines major cases of platform leadership and innovation challenges that companies face as markets, technologies, and competition evolve. Finally, it reviews some of major remaining issues for future research on platforms and innovation management.
Franco Malerba and Pamela Adams
This chapter examines sectoral differences in innovation and in the organization of innovative activities. Understanding differences across sectors is relevant for any analysis that aims to foster innovation in firms. This chapter first shows how studies of sectoral differences have progressed over the past decades. It then goes further to propose a systemic, dynamic and evolutionary framework for the analysis of sectoral differences: sectoral systems of innovation. This framework attempts to broaden the scope of analysis for firm strategies aimed at innovation and growth and lays the bases for a more solid understanding of the dynamics of innovative activities both within and across existing sectoral boundaries. By using this framework, managers may better understand both the forces that drive innovative activities in their sectors and how these forces change over time.
Margaret B. W. Graham
The business history of technology and innovation has come a long way from the days when economists had to be persuaded that firms had a role to play, and when the main debate focused on whether small firms or large firms were the true innovators. Organizational networks leading to successful innovation have usually contained both large and small enterprises exchanging mutually valuable information and expertise. It has become all too clear that innovation thrives on variety and open circulation of information, and that access to appropriate knowledge networks has been far more important than physical conditions or even access to boardrooms and executive offices. International comparisons are no longer pursued to explain leads and lags, but to point to different possible models for success, and our limited literature on innovation failures suggests that there is a lot more digging to be done.
Mark Dodgson and David M. Gann
This chapter addresses the consequences of technology for the management of innovation and how technology affects the innovation process. It examines the use of technology in the creation of ideas and search for and design of solutions to problems, and on the development and implementation of innovation strategies. The chapter explores the impact of technology on work organization and skills, on services innovation, and how various ‘innovation technologies’—including digital infrastructure, modelling and simulation, visualization and rapid prototyping—affect innovation processes. It argues that innovation technologies are enabling a new form of collective experimentation in innovation, breaking down barriers between organizations, disciplines, and professions, and creating opportunities for designing innovations that are better attuned to markets.