Democratizing Innovation

Democratizing Innovation

Eric von Hippel looks closely at the emerging system of user-centered innovation, in which users -- both individuals and firms -- often freely share their innovations with others, creating user-innovation communities and a rich intellectual commons.

Publication date: 17 Feb 2006

ISBN-10: 0262720477

ISBN-13: 9780262720472

Paperback: 216 pages

Views: 12,683

Type: Book

Publisher: The MIT Press

License: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic

Post time: 17 Sep 2006 01:49:36

Democratizing Innovation

Democratizing Innovation Eric von Hippel looks closely at the emerging system of user-centered innovation, in which users -- both individuals and firms -- often freely share their innovations with others, creating user-innovation communities and a rich intellectual commons.
Tag(s): Software Libre and Open Source
Publication date: 17 Feb 2006
ISBN-10: 0262720477
ISBN-13: 9780262720472
Paperback: 216 pages
Views: 12,683
Document Type: Book
Publisher: The MIT Press
License: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic
Post time: 17 Sep 2006 01:49:36
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Books Description:

Innovation is rapidly becoming democratized. Users, aided by improvements in computer and communications technology, increasingly can develop their own new products and services. These innovating users -- both individuals and firms -- often freely share their innovations with others, creating user-innovation communities and a rich intellectual commons. In Democratizing Innovation, Eric von Hippel looks closely at this emerging system of user-centered innovation. He explains why and when users find it profitable to develop new products and services for themselves, and why it often pays users to reveal their innovations freely for the use of all.

The trend toward democratized innovation can be seen in software and information products -- most notably in the free and open-source software movement -- but also in physical products. Author's many examples of user innovation in action range from surgical equipment to surfboards to software security features. He shows that product and service development is concentrated among "lead users," who are ahead on marketplace trends and whose innovations are often commercially attractive.

Von Hippel argues that manufacturers should redesign their innovation processes and that they should systematically seek out innovations developed by users. He points to businesses -- the custom semiconductor industry is one example -- that have learned to assist user-innovators by providing them with toolkits for developing new products. User innovation has a positive impact on social welfare, and von Hippel proposes that government policies, including R&D subsidies and tax credits, should be realigned to eliminate biases against it. The goal of a democratized user-centered innovation system, says von Hippel, is well worth striving for.

Reviews:

Amazon.com

:) "In spite of this drawback, I recomment his book. Perhaps senior executives will give a copy to a junior worker and ask him/her to translate it and recommend what their company should do. "

:) "... von Hippel is driven throughout his book by the motivation to present not only a fascinating new idea, but to show that this idea is already a reality and that there is empirical evidence that his concepts provide value for companies and customers."
 




About The Author(s)


Eric von Hippel is a Professor of Technological Innovation in the MIT Sloan School of Management, and is also a Professor in MIT’s Engineering Systems Division. He specializes in research related to the nature and economics of distributed and free innovation. He also develops and teaches about practical methods that individuals, open user communities, and firms can apply to improve their innovation development processes.

Eric Von Hippel

Eric von Hippel is a Professor of Technological Innovation in the MIT Sloan School of Management, and is also a Professor in MIT’s Engineering Systems Division. He specializes in research related to the nature and economics of distributed and free innovation. He also develops and teaches about practical methods that individuals, open user communities, and firms can apply to improve their innovation development processes.


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