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Collective firm-internal online idea development: Exploring the impact of feedback timeliness and knowledge overlap
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Machine Design (Dept.), Integrated Product Development.
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Machine Design (Dept.), Integrated Product Development. KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Machine Design (Dept.), Product Innovation Technology.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6024-7908
KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Machine Design (Dept.), Integrated Product Development.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9746-4498
(English)In: European Journal of Innovation Management, ISSN 1460-1060, E-ISSN 1758-7115Article in journal (Refereed) In press
Abstract [en]

Purpose – New opportunities to nurture good ideas for innovation arise as firms use web-based ideation platforms for collective idea generation and development. What influences creative performance in firm-internal collective idea development is however not as well researched as idea generation and thus an important area of research is the feedback and commenting on ideas. More specifically, the aim of this paper is to explore the role of feedback timeliness and knowledge overlap between feedback providers and ideas in collective firm-internal online idea development.Design/methodology/approach – An empirical study has been performed, drawing on data collected from a Swedish multi-national company using a web-based system for collective firm-internal ideation. The investigation explicitly captures the effects on ideation performance played by idea development contributions, in terms of: 1) feedback timeliness and 2) knowledge overlap between feedback providers and ideas.Findings – The empirical results show that idea development is significantly influenced by feedback timeliness as well as by the knowledge overlap between feedback providers and ideas. Specifically, it is found that longer time interval for feedback and an increased knowledge overlap result in an increased likelihood of idea acceptance. However, beyond a certain point, the positive effect of a longer feedback time interval decreases, resulting in a curvilinear relationship. Research limitations/implications – The results do not only shed new light on theory about collective idea development, but also provides management implications for collective firm-internal ideation. As the data used in the study has been collected in one single firm, care should be taken in generalizing the results to other domains.Practical implications – The results inform managers that it is not always better to involve more individuals in these emergent and distributed ideation systems, but that it might be beneficial to take measures to exercise some control in terms of when distributed and diverse employees can freely join in and out, especially considering the diversity of ideas, comments and creators. Originality/value – The results from the empirical study reveal the effects of of feedback timeliness and knowledge overlap on idea development. This provides us with new insights on the complex dynamics at place in collective firm-internal idea development, and offers implications for how we can fruitfully manage this process.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Emerald Group Publishing Limited.
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-237269OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kth-237269DiVA, id: diva2:1258809
Note

QC 20181214

Available from: 2018-10-25 Created: 2018-10-25 Last updated: 2019-01-11Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Idea development in online internal crowdsourcing: The role of peer contributions
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Idea development in online internal crowdsourcing: The role of peer contributions
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis focuses on idea development in online internal crowdsourcing. Online crowdsourcing for ideas has seen a substantial uptake in practice and has attracted a leading wave of researchers in the academic field. Although crowdsourcing can significantly expand the knowledge resources available in terms of the volume and variety of ideas, it also creates additional challenges for innovation management to nurture ideas to innovation. An emerging management issue is how to manage voluntary peer contributions to ideas in online internal crowdsourcing of the front end of innovation.  

Online internal crowdsourcing, which captures and develops ideas solely from employees, is less well-understood than other forms of crowdsourcing from external users. Furthermore, extant knowledge of ideation has thus far focused on idea generation, whereas little is known about what really happens during the development of ideas and also if and to what extent value is created when peer communities contribute to ideas. This thesis aims to explore the role of peer contributions in online internal crowdsourcing for idea development. 

Based on the data of ideas and comments collected from an idea management system in a Swedish multinational company, several types of analyses have been used to increase understanding of the role of peer contributions in idea development. For example, text mining methods including sentiment and expertise analyses have been selected to observe the role of contribution content in terms of sentiment and the knowledge background of contributors. On this basis, four appended research studies were conducted. The research results identify four types of peer communication in terms of contribution behaviors based on proactive/passive engagement as well as knowledge-focus, and their contributions influence idea development in different ways. In terms of the role of peer contributions, it is seen that dimensions of peer contributions, including timeliness, content sentiment and content type, play critical roles in idea development, and their roles are influenced by the contributors’ knowledge. 

These results contribute to existing theory in terms of extending the view of ideation to include idea development. This view not only provides new insights on peer-to-peer communication but also a more detailed understanding of peer contributions in online internal crowdsourcing for ideas. Moreover, the results also provide management implications for how firms can use online internal crowdsourcing to manage voluntary peer assistance to nurture ideas.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2018. p. 66
Series
TRITA-ITM-AVL ; 2018:52
Keywords
online internal crowdsourcing, idea development, peer-to-peer communication, peer contributions
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-237289 (URN)
Public defence
2018-11-16, Gladan, Innovationsstudion, Maskinkonstruktion, KTH Brinellvägen, 85, stockholm, 10:15 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2018-10-26 Created: 2018-10-26 Last updated: 2019-01-11Bibliographically approved

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Qian, ChenMagnusson, MatsBjörk, Jennie

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