Title: How open is the food NPD process? Preliminary results from an explorative study

Authors: Barbara Bigliardi; Francesco Galati; Filippo Pavesi

Addresses: Department of Engineering and Architecture, University of Parma, Parco Area delle Scienze 181/A, 43124, Parma, Italy ' Department of Engineering and Architecture, University of Parma, Parco Area delle Scienze 181/A, 43124, Parma, Italy ' Department of Economics, Università di Verona, Via Cantarane 24, 37129, Verona, Italy

Abstract: The food industry is facing a large number of challenges and a new paradigm for the development, acquisition and implementation of the huge potential of scientific breakthroughs is needed. Traditionally, the food NPD process is a closed process, where the inputs for new ideas come mainly from internal sources and new products are developed within the company's boundaries. Recently, this process has been modified to accommodate the OI paradigm, that addresses these challenges and opportunities, but it is still gaining momentum in the food sector. The main objective of this exploratory study is to investigate which stages of the NPD process food companies use to open, as well as which types of collaborations are established during each (open) stage of the NPD process. Three food companies were analysed and results suggest that the NPD process is more open during the very first phases, during the so-called fuzzy front-end. As for the collaboration, in the first stages of the NPD process the role played by customers and consumers is highly relevant, conversely suppliers' centrality becomes higher when technical knowledge is required.

Keywords: new product development; open innovation; collaboration; food industry; case study.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEIM.2019.099841

International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management, 2019 Vol.23 No.3, pp.229 - 245

Accepted: 12 Sep 2017
Published online: 15 May 2019 *

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