Exploring business ecosystem properties with a focus on innovation and entrepreneurship activities

  • With the rising importance of the external economic environment of organisations and open and collaborative innovation, the last two decades have seen an emergence of diverse literature streams and practitioner interpretations of business ecosystems. However, most of the scholars’ attention has been on ecosystems that function in the information and telecommunication technology industries and interactions between actors driven by economic interests. Moreover, business ecosystems analysis was embedded in the strategic management and organizational design literature, which primarily investigated the ecosystem leader using examples of powerful multinational corporations such as IBM, Microsoft, Google and Apple. These new powerful corporations significantly influenced the nature of the global competitive landscape (e.g. app economy), enabled the emergence of new business models (e.g. platform business) and even new forms of entrepreneurship (e.g. blogging and self-publishing). However, little remained known about the actors at the periphery of business ecosystems – that enable the functioning of such ecosystems - and the entrepreneurship processes that take place in the ecosystem environment. With the goal of contributing to the extant literature and creating a better understanding of the central factors that foster evolution, and the functioning and growth of today’s business ecosystems, the first project of this doctoral dissertation provides an overview of the ecosystem concept evolution in literature and in practice. Based on the findings of this project, this dissertation takes two qualitative empirical directions. To expand on the scope of the ecosystem concept, in the second project it looks at open and collaborative innovation processes in the fashion industry, analyses the role of individuals in business ecosystems and highlights the emergence of new forms of entrepreneurship. Following a worldwide growing startup trend and increased corporate engagement in diverse corporate venturing activities, the third project empirically investigates inter-organisational knowledge flows and value creation and capture processes in the innovation ecosystem environment. This dissertation contributes to the open and user innovation and entrepreneurship literature and provides practical implications for managers and entrepreneurs interested in participating in an existing business ecosystem or considering starting one on their own.

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Author:Monika Hauck
Publisher:WHU - Otto Beisheim School of Management
Place of publication:Vallendar
Referee:Christoph Hienerth, Franz W. Kellermanns
Document Type:Doctoral Thesis
Date of Publication (online):2021/06/29
Date of first Publication:2021/06/29
Publishing Institution:WHU - Otto Beisheim School of Management
Granting Institution:WHU - Otto Beisheim School of Management
Date of final exam:2019/06/14
Release Date:2021/06/29
Entrepreneurship; Innovation management
Page Number:168
Institutes:WHU Entrepreneurship and Innovation Group / Chair in Entrepreneurship and New Business Development
Licence (German):Copyright for this publication