Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Opening up Innovation through Information-Communication Technologies

Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) are no longer just for internal use. Rather, in the era of open and distributed innovation ICTs must be leveraged by businesses and organizations to reach, record and review ideas from internal and external sources ranging from vendors, suppliers, customers and employees. Interacting with all stakeholders improves the quality and consistency of ideas. ICTs enable that process at all levels through inclusion and interaction. We have just completed a paper that explores specific ways that ICTs can be used to enable the entire innovation process: from idea generation and development, to experimenting and testing, and finally, to commercialization of ideas.

In particular, ICTs enable management of sources of ideas, documentation of idea histories, distribution and sharing of ideas, market targeting and organic idea development. Successful practitioner examples and specific technologies are discussed in context to outline opportunities and trends in the new era of open, distributed, ICT-enabled innovation. The emerging trend of distributed and open innovation illustrates that customers and users are no longer passively waiting for products. Widely connected, interactive and collaborative practice of innovation will provide a competitive edge to the corporations that carefully select and deploy ICT strategies.

This paper is available at no charge to the sponsors of the study. Please contact Prof. Kevin C. Desouza for a copy of the papers. The citation for the paper is:

Awazu, Y., Baloh, P., Desouza, K.C., Wecht, C.H., Kim, J., and Jha, S. “Opening up Innovation through Information-Communication Technologies,” Working Paper: Institute for Innovation in Information Management, The Information School, University of Washington, July, 2006.

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