Title: Managing the front end of innovation with a group support system

Authors: Kalle Elfvengren, Samuli Kortelainen, Markku Tuominen

Addresses: Lappeenranta University of Technology, Skinnarilankatu 34, Lappeenranta, 53850, Finland. ' Lappeenranta University of Technology, Skinnarilankatu 34, Lappeenranta, 53850, Finland. ' Lappeenranta University of Technology, Skinnarilankatu 34, Lappeenranta, 53850, Finland

Abstract: Front end of innovation is defined as those activities that take place prior to the formal, well structured product development process. Front end activities are widely perceived as unstructured, fuzzy and hard to manage. There is a clear need for practical procedures and tools to support the front end process. This paper aims to enhance and systematise the early phases of the innovation process by presenting group support system tools and procedures for the management of the front end activities, such as new idea generation and concept evaluation. The empirical evidence is based on the experience gained in several cases carried out with industrial companies in the GDSS laboratory of Lappeenranta University of Technology.

Keywords: innovation management; innovation front end; FEI; group support systems; GSS; concept evaluation; idea generation; new ideas; Finland.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEIM.2009.025673

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management, 2009 Vol.10 No.3/4, pp.266 - 279

Published online: 23 May 2009 *

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