Building an open innovation capability Presentation - Professor Stephen Roper
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  • Really interesting Stephen, thanks​!​

    I think that you would be really interested in some of the most cutting-edge research that I have come across explaining crowds, open innovation, and citizen science.​

    And you may also enjoy this blog about the same too:
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    Building an open innovation capability Presentation - Professor Stephen Roper Building an open innovation capability Presentation - Professor Stephen Roper Presentation Transcript

    • Building an open innovation capability
    • ERC overview • The Enterprise Research Centre (ERC) is an independent research centre which conducts policy relevant research on SME growth and development. The ERC is being led by Professor Stephen Roper (Warwick) and Professor Mark Hart (Aston). • The ERC is a partnership between Warwick Business School, Aston Business School, Imperial College Business School, Strathclyde Business School, Birmingham Business School and De Montfort University. • Funding is being provided by the Economic and Social Research Council, the UK government Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, the British Bankers’ Association and the Technology Strategy Board. • Research within ERC focuses on entrepreneurial ambition and inclination, leadership capabilities in the management teams of SMEs, the impact of diversity on SME start-up and growth, the financing of growth companies, innovation and exporting in SMEs and the role of SMEs in UK jobs growth. • Alongside its research activities the ERC aims to act as a focal point for SMEs and the SME research and policy communities in the UK, facilitating knowledge exchange.
    • Developing an open innovation centre for Northern Ireland Professor Stephen Roper (Warwick) Professor Nola Hewitt-Dundas (Queens)
    • Study addresses three key questions 1. Does NI need an open innovation centre? – What is open innovation? – What are the benefits – firm and regional level? – Where does NI stand relative to other areas? – So what should we do? 2. What would an open innovation centre look like? 3. What would be the benefits of an open innovation centre?
    • Question 1: Does NI need an open innovation centre?
    • Open innovation (OI) is …. • Innovation can be thought of as firms’ introduction of new products, services or ways of doing business • And open innovation is ‘… the use of purposive inflows and outflows of knowledge to accelerate internal innovation, and expand the markets for external use of innovation, respectively’. • Typically, open innovation involves innovation partnerships between firms and/or between firms and other organisations such as customers, suppliers, universities or consultants.
    • Firm level benefits of OI • Evidence suggests that OI benefits firms by: – Stimulating creativity – Reducing risk – Accelerating innovation – Improving innovation quality – Helping increase sales from innovation – Helping access new skills/technology • But the benefits differ for smaller and larger firms 05 10152025 Share(%)ofinnovativesales 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Breadth of linkages (0-8) Small Medium and large
    • OI also has other wider benefits … • Increased innovation externalities - openness may increase levels of innovative activity in the region which may themselves generate spillover benefits – For example, under-priced quality improvements -> productivity gains – Demonstration effects – Sustainability or clustering effects • Externalities of openness – regardless of the impact on firms’ innovation, openness itself may generate positive externalities by increasing levels of organisational interaction and knowledge diffusion. • These wider social benefits (and the associated market and system failures) provide a clear rationale for public intervention to support OI
    • Benchmarking OI in NI compared to other regions • Source: UK Innovation Survey NI lags all other UK regions – i.e. levels of open innovation are lowest here Two implications: 1. NI firms are not benefitting from OI and its potential contribution to innovation 2. More broadly NI is missing out on potential regional benefits
    • Benchmarking OI in NI compared to other regions • Source: UK Innovation Survey And most of NI’s problem is with smaller firms – larger firms lag but not by too much Openness appears particularly limited among smaller firms in Northern Ireland and those in services. Comparing firms’ connectivity to individual types of external partner – suggests that connectivity to each type of partner is lower in NI than other UK regions. This suggests the generality of the openness deficit in Northern Ireland rather than this deficit being due to any particular type of innovation partner
    • So does NI need an OI centre? • Northern Ireland certainly needs more OI which would benefit innovation, productivity etc. • The evidence suggests that existing organisations have not delivered on OI in Northern Ireland – the region lags other UK regions • Something else needs to be done to support OI (and innovation) across sectors but perhaps particularly targeting smaller firms • So we think the answer to the question is “Yes”. And that there is a strong case for intervention in this area.
    • QUESTION 2 What would an OI centre look like?
    • Possible roles of an OI Centre • Building Awareness - an OI centre could play a valuable role in increasing the awareness of the benefits of collaborative and open-innovation. Such activities could be events or network based, involve broadcast and other media and the compilation and publication of case-study evidence. • Advocacy – an OI centre could work as a champion or advocate for OI within a regional innovation system, supporting and encouraging the development of policy measures which strengthen collaboration. • Capability building – an OI centre might be to help firms develop OI capabilities for managing external relationships or collaborative innovation. This is essentially a staff or management training activity which is likely to be particularly important for smaller firms. • Inbound provision of partner information – an OI centre might help local firms to identify potential innovation partners either locally or externally. • Outbound promotion of partner information– an OI centre might promote the capabilities of firms as potential partners to organisations elsewhere. This is primarily a marketing and/or promotional activity. • Facilitation or brokering of partnerships and collaboration – this type of brokering activity aims to work with individual firms to establish innovation partnerships. The credibility of individual brokers is likely to be key to success in this activity. • Structuring of partnerships and collaboration – each individual innovation partnership is likely to raise different issues relating to contracting, IP etc. This activity is aimed at assisting firms with the structuring of open innovation relationships and is likely to require detailed work with the partners.
    • Linking activities and client groups • Different OI centre activities are going to be relevant to different target groups • Perhaps the greatest gains in terms of innovation are to be made in moving from non-innovators to closed innovators to open innovators • Capacity building, inbound partnering and facilitation may be particularly important for smaller firms
    • OI organisations come in four main types: • Research organisations – which use OI as a commercialisation methodology. Examples are IMEC, the Collective Research Centres in Belgium and the Holst Centre. • • Networked Incubators - closely related to the business incubator model. The emphasis here is on technology-based start-up businesses and applying the principles of OI to commercialisation. Three examples are Chalmers Innovation, Sweden, Normandie Incubation (France) and the Innovation Centre (UK). • Company based centres – larger companies have led the move to an OI model for innovation. Early examples of OI were Proctor & Gamble (P&G) with their ‘Connect and Develop’ programme, Unilever and IBM’s Collaborative Innovation Initiatives. • • Independent innovation Intermediaries – independent organisations formed to provide support to broad groups of businesses to become more innovative through raising awareness of the need to innovate alongside the development of collaborative networks. Examples of innovation intermediaries include InnovationXchange and the Innovation University Enterprise Network
    • Question 3: what would be the benefits of an open innovation centre?
    • Developing a logic model for an OI Centre… To increase the level of effective open innovation in NI export oriented businessesVision Goals Activities Input indicators Output indicators Outcome Indicators 1. To increase the level of awareness of open innovation and its potential benefits among firms in the target groups 2. To ensure future policy development supports extended open innovation To increase the capacity for operationalising effective open innovation among firms in the target groups 1. To encourage non-innovating firms to move to become open innovators 2. To encourage ‘closed’ innovators to move to become open innovators 3. To encourage ‘limited’ open innovators to extend their open innovation activity Awareness Promotional events/ workshops, on- line promotion, case studies/ newsletters Advocacy Input to policy consultations or reviews, visitors to reference site 1. Number of attendees from target firms at events 2. Website hits/page statistics, media coverage 3. No. of inputs to consultations/reviews 4. Local and international visitors 1. Awareness of OI among each of three target groups 2. Perceived role of OI Centre as regional ‘Champion for OI’ 3. Perceived changes in policy environment for OI among target groups Capacity Development Needs analyses, materials development, training courses or events 1. No. of training needs analyses 2. Number of course participants and firms from each of target groups 1. Improvements in managing inward OI by participants 2. Improvements in managing outward OI by participants Partner information provision External media and on- line promotion of NI innovation, local and international partner search activities Facilitation activities Brokering of new innovation partner relationships, network or consortium building activities/events Structuring activities Support for individual partnerships, facilitation of access to external professional support services (IP, legal etc.) 1. No. of external/internal partner searches 2. Number/investment value of instances of brokering new relationships, events etc. 3. Number/contract value of referrals to service providers for facilitation etc. 1. Proportion of each target group seeking to develop new innovation partnerships 2. Proportion of each target group which has developed new innovation partnerships 3. Proportion of each target group engaging with professional services to facilitate innovation partnerships. 1. Share of limited/intensive open innovators in NI 2. Proportions of non-innovators which have become open innovators 3. Proportions of closed innovators which have become open innovators 4. Proportion of limited open innovators which have become extensive open innovators
    • A Northern Ireland OI Centre • A broadly-based innovation intermediary targeting smaller non-innovators or closed innovators. Perhaps 10-12 people. • Navigate not duplicate - a ‘sat-nav’ organisation helping smaller firms find and work with appropriate innovation partners (both in NI and outside) • An opportunity for policy innovation – NI is leading the way in considering the policy challenges of OI. An OI centre of this type would be a innovative step • Is this part of Invest NI? Probably not: – Many of target groups outside INI’s existing clients – Issues of independence and ‘honest broker’ seem important • But would draw significantly on INI expertise, support and schemes and be a long-term project
    • Contact us: If you would like any more information about the ERC and any of its activities please contact the Director, Stephen Roper at or the Deputy Director, Mark Hart at More details about the activities of the ERC and our latest events can be found at: