Title: Knowledge transfer in the context of frugal innovation

Authors: Lukas Neumann; Jonas Böhm; Christoph H. Wecht

Addresses: University of St. Gallen, Dufourstrasse 40a, 9010 St. Gallen, Switzerland ' University of St. Gallen, Dufourstrasse 40a, 9010 St. Gallen, Switzerland ' New Design University St. Pölten, Mariazellerstrasse 97a, 3100 St. Pölten, Austria

Abstract: In this paper, we explore knowledge transfer in the context of frugal innovation (i.e., a specific form of resource-constraint innovation). Based on original data from 11 case studies, we observe two distinct clusters. Firms in the cluster 'active' are signified by their direct experience in the target market. Companies in the cluster 'non-active' were not physically present in the target market prior to the frugal initiative. Further, three distinct phases emerged along the value creation process: 1) market research; 2) development; 3) go-to-market. It became evident that firms from the cluster non-active are confronted much more with an influx and outflow of knowledge. Transfer in both directions requires significantly more effort. With this research we contribute to the growing body of literature on frugal innovation and the emerging middle class. We conclude this study with a discussion of the implications of our findings for management practice and research.

Keywords: frugal innovation; knowledge transfer; emerging markets; resource-constraint innovation; bottom of the pyramid; BoP; emerging middle class.

DOI: 10.1504/IJTTC.2017.089663

International Journal of Technology Transfer and Commercialisation, 2017 Vol.15 No.4, pp.415 - 426

Available online: 31 Jan 2018 *

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