Title: The knowledge-innovation nexus in the welfare service ecosystem

Authors: Harri Jalonen

Addresses: Turku University of Applied Sciences, Lemminkäisenkatu 30, 20520 Turku, Finland

Abstract: This paper makes two contributions on knowledge-intensive innovation research. Firstly, it identifies and elaborates on the knowledge problems present in the welfare service's innovation ecosystem. Secondly, drawing on relevant theoretical approaches, this paper discusses the managerial implications these knowledge problems pose for stakeholders involved in innovating welfare services. The identified knowledge problems are uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity; uncertainty refers to a lack of information or factual knowledge about something, complexity arises from the intricacy and connectivity of the various elements, and ambiguity stems from multiple interpretations. The paper also presents the managerial implications for each type of knowledge problem; uncertainty can be reduced by the acquisition of more information and knowledge increased by creating connections within the ecosystem, complexity can be minimised by increasing knowledge capacity and decomposing problems, and ambiguity can be addressed by structuring the unknown into a frame of reference.

Keywords: innovation; uncertainty; complexity; ambiguity; ecosystems; welfare services; knowledge problems; managerial implications; stakeholders; factual knowledge; intricacy; connectivity; multiple interpretations; connections; knowledge capacity; decomposing problems; frames of reference; knowledge-based development.

DOI: 10.1504/IJKBD.2013.052492

International Journal of Knowledge-Based Development, 2013 Vol.4 No.1, pp.34 - 49

Received: 12 Jun 2012
Accepted: 25 Jun 2012

Published online: 04 Mar 2013 *

Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article