CUED Publications database

Idea Competitions under scrutiny: Acquisition, intelligence or public relations mechanism?

Mortara, L and Ford, SJ and Jaeger, M (2013) Idea Competitions under scrutiny: Acquisition, intelligence or public relations mechanism? Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 80. pp. 1563-1578. ISSN 0040-1625

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Abstract

Idea Competitions (ICs) are becoming a popular mechanism chosen by firms to perform Open Innovation. They are a way to engage with external sources of knowledge such as individual entrepreneurs and small firms who are asked to submit ideas and compete for a prize. However, little is known about the success of ICs as acquisition mechanisms. The researchers conducted interviews in five multinational companies to evaluate the effects of using ICs as an acquisition mechanism. Although still preliminary, the results of this study show that the success of ICs as an acquisition mechanism remains uncertain because their output (i.e. the number of ideas acquired) is often low compared to the input (i.e. the number of ideas submitted) and effort required to run them (e.g. to vet ideas). Across the cases observed, ICs appear to be more successful at identifying and acquiring early-stage ideas, particularly those outside the current business focus. The study shows that ICs deliver other functional benefits such as improved intelligence and public relations and that these need to be considered as part of the evaluation of the IC's success. The paper concludes by discussing the conditions in which ICs are implemented and the implications for Open Innovation theory. © 2013 Elsevier Inc.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Acquisition mechanism Crowdsourcing Idea Competitions Innovation contests Innovation tournaments Intelligence Open innovation Public relations User innovation
Subjects: UNSPECIFIED
Divisions: Div E > Strategy and Policy
Depositing User: Cron Job
Date Deposited: 07 Mar 2014 11:45
Last Modified: 08 Dec 2014 02:17
DOI: 10.1016/j.techfore.2013.01.008