The Missing Link in Open Innovation

An article on the LinkedIn website noted that the open innovation movement is in full swing, and companies everywhere are turning to external sources for new product ideas. But, with open innovation now the standard business model, how can your company truly gain a competitive advantage? More specifically, where can you look for new products that no one else has thought to look? Though it sometimes may seem like the well of new ideas has run dry, there is a practical, cost-effective solution that remains relatively untapped across industries.

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Business Model Innovation

The Business 2 Community website noted that innovation at the level of the business model is innovation that helps create new markets and value networks, eventually displacing existing markets and value networks. This transformation has traditionally taken many years to play out but that is changing, and changing fast. What we are witnessing today is something of a Cambrian explosion of business model innovation that is changing not just how the game is played but the game itself. New technologies are eroding boundaries between industries and markets that were once considered distinct. In the process, new entrants are creating wealth on an unprecedented scale.

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Translating Open Science to Innovation

The Science | Business website noted that while an open philosophy of science has advanced impressively in the past two decades, one cannot yet claim that it has led to a similar increase in innovation. There are straightforward reasons for this. Once a new discovery is made, it is often unclear, or of less importance to the researcher(s) how best to apply it. Understanding the behaviour of a new material, or a new physical property, may say little about the best uses of this knowledge. There are other barriers as well.

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Service Business Models

The BusinessWire website reported that the past 5 years have seen huge levels of technology innovation in the energy and environment industry, with smart technology re-defining the landscape. The next 5 years will be the era of service business models innovation, as suppliers compete to maximise the real benefits for customers through strategic partnerships and/or acquisitions. Performance contracting will become the customers’ preferred business model and suppliers will need to develop service capabilities or partner with facility management companies or energy service providers in order to play in the most dynamic part of the market to maximise value co-creation.

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Business Model Canvas Is Replacing Traditional Business Plans

The PR Newswere website noted that the Business Model Canvas is rapidly being adopted worldwide. In a study conducted jointly by Strategyzer and Business Models Inc., the main reason identified for the adoption of the Business Model Canvas is that it provides a common language for strategy and innovation, thus optimizing strategic discussions and ideas. And this is one reason why corporations such as Nestlé, Proctor & Gamble, Mastercard and universities Berkeley, Stanford and IMD have embraced this approach.

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The Benefits of Open Innovation

The World Economic Forum website noted thaT In a more connected world, open innovation offers opportunities to reduce research costs, spread risks and bring innovations to market more quickly. This approach has yielded significant benefits in many fields, including healthcare, IT business models and public policy. In the IT and software industries, open innovation has meant that companies license one another’s software to build new types of products. Governments are also embracing the open innovation paradigm.

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An example of Open Innovation in China

The Business Spectator reports that Zhang Ruimin, the chairman of the Haier group of companies, wants to turn Western management theory on its head and transform Haier into a giant platform for innovation. As a maker of white goods, the old structure revolves around research and development and sales and marketing. In this brave new world, Haier will dismantle traditional structures in favor of open platforms where people can bring in their own ideas and resources to develop new products and services. Zhang’s dream is to turn Haier into an open ecosystem.

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