Title: The value of long-term co-innovation relationships: experiential approach

Authors: Tuula Lehtimäki; Hanna Komulainen; Minna Oinonen; Jari Salo

Addresses: Oulu Business School, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 4600, FI-90014, Finland ' Oulu Business School, University of Oulu, P.O. Box 4600, FI-90014, Finland ' School of Business and Management, Lappeenranta University of Technology, P.O. Box 20, FI-53851 Lappeenranta, Finland ' Department of Economics and Management, University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 27, FI-00014, Finland

Abstract: Co-innovation often occurs in trustful long-term relationships when a fruitful match is found. Evaluating the value of those relationships is difficult but necessary for their management. Discussions of business-to-business relationship value have been revolving more around utilitarian elements even though experiential value aspects have gained increasing research interest. Here, the concept of experiential value is applied to understand the value of long-term co-innovation relationships. An exploratory case study of such a relationship between a supplier, its customer, and a university was built on in-depth interviews with key informants from each party. The study provides a multi-level framework of experiential value in the context of co-innovation relationships that encompasses the subjective, temporal, and contextual aspects of value as well as personal relationships and projects as devices that transfer individuals' value experiences between individuals and organisations, and through time. This study contributes to relationship value and co-innovation research by elaborating on the experiential aspects of relationship value.

Keywords: business relationship; case study; co-innovation relationship; collaborative innovation; experiential value; explorative case; project business; long-term relationship; relationship value; triadic relationship.

DOI: 10.1504/IJBIR.2018.091078

International Journal of Business Innovation and Research, 2018 Vol.16 No.1, pp.1 - 23

Received: 20 Feb 2016
Accepted: 12 Nov 2016

Published online: 02 Apr 2018 *

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