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Independent innovativeness diminishes with evolution

As an industry develops, customers and the market replace research and science as the sources of innovation.

That is what a newly published doctoral dissertation finds.

In his doctoral dissertation in the field of strategic marketing titled “Dominant designs in complex technological systems – A longitudinal case study of a telecom company 1980–2010”, Henrik Sievers identifies key innovation sources and processes that facilitate the management of dominant designs.

In the dissertation, Henrik Sievers also observes that as an industry develops into a more horizontal and open market form, the sources of innovation change from those based on research and science to customer and market-oriented ones. Horizontal refers to a situation in which a product or service previously provided by one firm is now offered by many different types of companies and actors even those from different industries. At the same time, the role of the incumbent multi-product firm diminishes, and that of vendors and niche players strengthens.

According to Sievers, instead of focusing on creating just one product, firms must take the industry’s transformation into account, which will then facilitate adoption and commercialisation of new technology across technological boundaries. This will inevitably mean the deterioration of an individual company’s and established industry’s capacity for innovation.

Ability to adapt leads to success


In his doctoral dissertation, Henrik Sievers also shed light on how the adaptation processes of companies change during an industry's evolution. The topic is current both in Finland and worldwide, as companies, fields and even entire countries have been shaken by structural changes. Finland has been hit hardest by the paper industry's downward spiral and Nokia’s deteriorating market position. What then are the key factors with regard to adaptation?

"‘Previously, a company adapted to emerging competition by searching for new technology, by turning it into a winning product and developing the quality products and customer process expertise. Today, the best way for a company to adapt is by identifying technologies that can satisfy as many customer needs as possible and by gaining the interest of innovators i.e. product and service developers. Process excellence, the correct partners and the ability to identify one's own place in the value chain are important factors in a company’s success", Henrik Sievers sums up.

Public examination of doctoral dissertation


Henrik Sievers’, MSc (Econ.), doctoral dissertation in the field of Marketing titled “Dominant designs in complex technological systems – A longitudinal case study of a telecom company 1980–2010” will be examined at noon on Friday 15 May 2015. The event will be held in the PwC Hall (Chydenia Building, Runeberginkatu 22-24) at the School of Business.

Professor Rami Olkkonen (Turku School of Economics) will act as opponent and Henrikki Tikkanen (Aalto University School of Business) as custos.

Further information:
Henrik Sievers
[email protected]
tel. +358 40 507 0025

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