Title: Open innovation through customers: open innovation intermediary services supporting firms. An exploratory study

Authors: Barbara Aquilani; Tindara Abbate

Addresses: Department of Economics and Management (D.E.Im), University of Tuscia, Viterbo, 01100, Italy ' Department of Economics and Management, University of Messina, Messina, 98122, Italy

Abstract: We aim at analysing open innovation intermediary (OII) services provided to firms in order to support their innovation processes with customers in an open innovation (OI) context. After a review of past literature contributions, we analysed two OII platforms and mapped the services provided in this domain, through a case study methodology. We found that: 1) both the number of OII and the services provided are limited; 2) OIIs approach this OI mode in various ways, offering a different bundle of services; 3) these differences are not easily distinguishable by OII web-based platform characteristics. The paper enhances knowledge of services provided by OII in the innovation processes firms carried out with customers, little studied in literature, even if theoretical contributions recognise many benefits for firms. It also sheds light on the characteristics of web-based platforms of OI, refining previous definitions.

Keywords: open innovation intermediaries; OII; web platforms; web services; case study; intermediary services; customer involvement.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMABS.2015.073533

International Journal of Markets and Business Systems, 2015 Vol.1 No.3, pp.244 - 259

Received: 27 Mar 2015
Accepted: 23 Jun 2015

Published online: 11 Dec 2015 *

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