Title: Frugal innovation in, by and for Europe

Authors: Henning Kroll; Madeleine Gabriel

Addresses: Fraunhofer ISI, Breslauer Strasse 48, 76139 Karlsruhe, Germany; Institute for Economic and Cultural Geography, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Schneiderberg 50, 30167 Hannover, Germany ' Nesta, 58 Victoria Embankment, London, EC4Y 0DS, UK

Abstract: In recent years, the notion of frugal innovation has gained greater prominence in both the academic sphere and in political discussion but, so far, been mostly associated with emerging or developing economies. However, frugal innovation does not only describe particular products, or, more generally, products for a particular group of very low income customers. At least as importantly, it designates a way of innovating that focuses functionalities smartly and uses resources wisely. In that, it is very much in line with needs also, and increasingly, pertinent to European markets. Most importantly, it harbours the potential of reconciling viable business models with the much needed ambitions of addressing long-term societal as well as imminent social challenges. In doing so, a particular emphasis needs to be put on quality and sustainability rather than cheapest possible prices.

Keywords: frugal innovation; Europe; definition; process; framework; characteristics.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTM.2020.109230

International Journal of Technology Management, 2020 Vol.83 No.1/2/3, pp.34 - 54

Accepted: 11 Nov 2019
Published online: 02 Sep 2020 *

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