Business Model Concept: Building on Resource Concepts
Tampere University of Technology
August 22, 2008
Tampere University of Technology, No. 745, 2008
The importance of the business model concept is widely recognised in contributions to the existing business and management literature. The concept grew into a generic term to describe the logic of what a firm does and how it does it. However, while the money generating characteristics of the concept are well known, there remains fundamental confusion as to its essential meaning in management thinking. This dissertation argues that current conceptualizations for the business model concept are poorly developed and in need of enhancement in order to fulfil prevailing needs in both theory and practice.
The study investigates current conceptualisations of business models and identifies the deficiencies, thus enlarging earlier academic discussion. This is achieved by means of a review of the business model literature and a single case study exploiting a business model concept. An additional empirical investigation of practitioners' perceptions of the concept of business model illustrates the conceptual shortcomings within the practising community. To precisely identify deficiencies in business model conceptualizations, the study establishes criteria to investigate research constructs. The initial criteria were developed into broader general research criteria for use in a variety of contexts to examine how a particular research construct under study could be developed. These criteria are used here to identify the differences in existing business model conceptualizations and also the needs for further development of the discipline.
Finally, the study proposes and empirically validates the components for the business model concept to fulfil the needs identified in previous phases. This is carried out by populating and classifying the resources presented in the resource-based view in management literature. A categorisation of these resource components renders the listing of resources more easily applicable in future research. In addition, several conclusions are drawn that have implications for managers in areas such as pinpointing potential bottlenecks in the current business model configuration.
The study paves the way for the theory-building phase of research into the business model concept. Future studies should investigate and fine-tune the details of the proposed resource categorisation and its structure. Such studies should also test the categorisation more thoroughly and evaluate its applicability to multiple case studies. In addition, future research should examine the linkages between resources and strategy, and between resources and operational activities. Finally, future research could examine in detail the usage of individual resources, the relationships between resources, the assembling of resources and the impact this has on the success of value creation.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 61
Keywords: business model, concept, resource, resource-based view, strategy, classification, taxonomy, criteria
JEL Classification: M10Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: October 22, 2008
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