Title: Modus operandi of SMEs towards cooperative innovation: evidence from Bizkaia

Authors: Bart Kamp

Addresses: Orkestra-Fundación Deusto, Kalea Mundaiz 50, E-20012, Donostia/San Sebastian, Spain; Deusto Business School, Universidad de Deusto, Av. de las Universidades, 24, E-48007 Bilbao, Spain

Abstract: In recent times, open innovation has become fashionable as a way to make up for limited internal efforts around innovation. In the present paper, we review the state of cooperative innovation among small- and medium-sized companies (SMEs) by categorising their modus operandi regarding innovation in general and towards cooperative innovation in particular. To that end, we create a framework for analysis that is rooted in the dichotomy between doing-using-interacting (DUI) and science-technology-investigation (STI). The inventory obtained serves as a basis for identifying implications for managers with regard to enhancing the propensity for cooperative innovation among SMEs and increasing the benefits that can follow from it. We find that SMEs should devote particularly care to creating a position for an internal innovation promoter to act as a boundary spanner between the firm and external partners. Additional recommendations for thought and action are to look beyond the regional home base for innovation partners and consider implementing more formal governance arrangements for cooperative innovation.

Keywords: innovation modes; open innovation; cooperation; collaborative enterprise; industrial networks; SMEs; small and medium-sized enterprises; cooperative innovation; Bizkaia; internal innovation; innovation partners; formal governance.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCENT.2016.082329

International Journal of Collaborative Enterprise, 2016 Vol.5 No.3/4, pp.143 - 180

Received: 29 Apr 2016
Accepted: 31 Jul 2016

Published online: 19 Feb 2017 *

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