Collaborative Idea Elaboration on Web-Based Ideation Platforms
3 Pages Posted: 3 Aug 2014
Date Written: 2013
In recent years many companies have started integrating their customers into product and service development processes. This phenomenon is known as Open Innovation (OI). In OI research, especially the integration of customers into the early stages of product or service innovation has caught a lot of attention in theory and practice.
Especially since the Internet as a simple way to communicate with a broad audito- rium allows new forms of customer integration. Web-based innovation platforms (WBIP) for implementing Virtual Idea Communities or online Idea Competitions now allow all customers to share their insights, opinions and ideas regarding a product with the manufacturer or other customers.
Although WBIPs rely on customers to exchange their views, needs and opinions regarding the products, only few of them offer a structured process that guides them through the generation and elaboration process in a collaborative manner. The next important step in the evolution of WBIP should focus on the design of the platform to ideally support contributors in generating good ideas. The success of collaborative approaches to problem solving and creativity suggests using structured collaboration on WBIP.
This paper develops a structured process to support groups of people in the collaborative elaboration of their ideas. The process goal is enhancing an initial idea into the description of a relevant problem and a possible solution to this problem. The research was guided by the following research question: 1. How can the idea elaboration in WBIP be improved by a repeatable collaboration process?
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