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Forms of Innovation—Insights from Product Development

Halvor Holtskog ()
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Halvor Holtskog: Gjovik University College

Journal of the Knowledge Economy, 2017, vol. 8, issue 1, 63-76

Abstract: Abstract The dualism of science, technology and innovation (STI) and doing, using and interacting (DUI) modes of innovation has been accepted by scholars as a seemingly clear and useful heuristic dichotomy for analysing and benchmarking innovation systems. This paper challenges the existence of this dichotomy. Rather than the traditional approach of looking at statistical data and financial statements figures, our empirical findings are based on a thorough field analysis of product development projects in the Norwegian automotive industry. We argue that in the process of embedding scientific knowledge into products, the companies apply interchangeably STI mode and DUI mode in a sophisticated pattern of knowledge creation. Unawareness of these subtle integrating processes can lead to wrong conclusions about how knowledge is actually generated and processed at the ground floor in manufacturing firms. Misguided policy interventions can, in the worst case, be the result of such wrong conclusions. We followed firms in automotive industry in various product development projects. In addition to an understanding of product development processes, we investigated how the knowledge is created and implemented into specific products. The objective of the paper is to provide with more accurate understanding of how knowledge processes shape competitive advantages at the firm level.

Keywords: Forms of innovation; Product development; Case study (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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Handle: RePEc:spr:jknowl:v:8:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1007_s13132-015-0318-8