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Unpacking the innovation ecosystem construct: Evolution, gaps and trends

Leonardo Augusto de Vasconcelos Gomes, Ana Lucia Figueiredo Facin, Mario Sergio Salerno and Rodrigo Kazuo Ikenami

Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 2018, vol. 136, issue C, 30-48

Abstract: The innovation ecosystem construct has emerged as a promising approach in the literature on strategy, innovation and entrepreneurship. It draws upon former business ecosystem literature. However, the term innovation ecosystem has been employed in very polysemic and sometimes competing ways. Many adjectives used with reference to innovation ecosystems render the consolidation of the construct more difficult - which its characteristics, boundaries and relation with other, to some extent competing, constructs, such as supply chain and value chain are. To clarify concepts, to identify trends and research opportunities, we conducted a systematic literature review from 1993 to 2016, with a hybrid methodology including bibliometric and content analysis. Besides highlighting the most influential papers and exhaustively discussing the innovation ecosystem concept and its variations, we identify a turning point in the literature, the transition from business ecosystem to innovation ecosystem. Business ecosystem relates mainly to value capture, while innovation ecosystem relates mainly to value creation. We conclude by describing six research streams in innovation ecosystem: industry platform×innovation ecosystem; innovation ecosystem strategy, strategic management, value creation and business model; innovation management; managing partners; the innovation ecosystem lifecycle; innovation ecosystem and new venture creation. These streams lead us to propose opportunities for further research to solidify the innovation ecosystem concept.

Keywords: Innovation ecosystem; Business ecosystem; Strategy; Innovation; Entrepreneurship; Systematic review (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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