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Open Innovation: The New Mantra Product Image

Open Innovation: The New Mantra

  • Published: January 2008
  • 20 Pages
  • Generator Research Limited

Open Innovation: The New Mantra Vol 3, 1

Are you sure it doesn’t apply to you?

-Detailed case studies
-Leading edge approaches
-Business rationale
-Key success criteria
-Three different models
-Broad applicability


Open innovation is an emerging trend that will eventually change how most companies go about improving existing products and defining new products. The same goes for services.

The rationale is simple: if digital technology has the power to restructure entire industries that are affected by virtual content, then it can certainly restructure the innovation processes used in most companies which are, after all, based on managing the flow of just another type of virtual content: high-quality, creative thinking.

Open innovation involves bringing such high-quality, creative thinking into the company from the outside. Professional managers can then commercialise the best of it using the company’s assets, while rewarding the originators.


This report begins by clearly explaining what open innovation is and why it is not unique to internet businesses.

Next, the report READ MORE >

Executive Summary

Case Study: Mindstorms NTX


1998: Mindstorms Launch
1998 – 2000: LEGO unofficially sanctions developer community
2000: New company strategy
2002: Mindstorms NXT becomes a liability
2002 – 2004: Developer community takes over
2003 – 2005: The problem years
2004: Strategic re-think
2004: External developers become essential
2004 – 2005: A collaborative development project

Third-party Hardware Programme

Woking Relationship
Commercial Relationship


Mindstorms NXT: Growth

New Programs: Entrepreneurs
Selection Criteria
Example Project: Architectural Construction Kits


Additional Examples

Backstage BBC


Business Rationale

1. Accept that valuable expertise is likely to exist outside the company
2. Be prepared to make the company’s valuable assets available to outsiders
3. Because the company cannot pursue every internally-generated idea, some great opportunities might be lost
4. Make sure the programme makes business sense
5. Be realistic about any cultural barriers, but be prepared to push ahead if you have a solid case

Three Different Innovation Models

1. Early-stage Product Definition: Expert User Groups
2. Product Enhancements: Developer Programme
3. New Business Areas: Affiliated Entrepreneur Programme

Key Success Factors

Clear, Focused Objective
Clear, Timely Benefit to Participants
Deep Experience Pool
Relevant Skills
Experimentation-friendly Product
Selection Criteria: Lead User Groups

Note: Product cover images may vary from those shown


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