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Mechanisms in open innovation: A review and synthesis of the literature

Ruben H.A.J. Ogink, Martin C. Goossen, A. Georges L. Romme and Henk Akkermans

Technovation, 2023, vol. 119, issue C

Abstract: A large body of literature explores the role of context, structure, actors, and outcomes of open innovation (OI), yet pays little attention to the mechanisms underlying these relationships. In this review paper, we synthesize the OI literature using a context-mechanism-outcome approach to identify and classify the various mechanisms observed in empirical OI studies. Our findings demonstrate that the OI literature draws on a wide variety of mechanisms originating from the fields of management, sociology, economics, and psychology. The fifteen mechanisms most frequently observed in the literature fall into four categories: governance and policies; environmental dynamics and interactions; knowledge, skills, and capabilities; and learning by doing. Moreover, by examining the levels of analysis of these mechanisms, we observe substantial differences in how these mechanisms operate at the individual, project, firm, network, and society level. Finally, we identify various avenues for future research arising from our synthesis of the literature.

Keywords: Open innovation; Literature review; Generative mechanisms; Research synthesis; Mechanisms; Research agenda (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2023
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DOI: 10.1016/j.technovation.2022.102621

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