Types of innovation by the firm's strategy

Closed innovation

The knowledge portfolio of the company and its employees as well as the creativity of employees make a closed innovation system.

In case the company uses only his own knowledge capital to achieve its innovation aims, the process is called a closed innovation. Drug development, in most cases, belongs to this group.

Its most important features:

  • the organization develops the innovative technology itself as well as the know-how,
  • the process and the result are strictly kept under control.

Open innovation

This can be extended if we open the system (e.g. to suppliers or universities) and integrate their activities to the innovation system of the company. This is called open innovation. Most of the big companies today take advantage of the opportunities provided by open innovation.

It is important to observe that it does not refer to a knowledge and technology accessible by everyone, but it is a special collaborative way of relationship building.

A special type of open innovation is the so-called Living Lab - its most important feature is that the goals of the innovation processes are determined by the end user. Living Labs are open innovation ecosystems in real-life settings in which user-driven innovation is fully integrated in the co-creative process of new services, products and societal infrastructures.

The European Network of Living Labs (http://www.openlivinglabs.eu) was founded in 2006 and has more than two hundred members. It is continuously supported from different EU funding programmes.

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