Combining Open and Closed Forms of Innovation: An Investigation of Emerging Tensions and Management Approaches

  • Emilie Ruiz
  • Michela BerettaEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing book series (LNBIP, volume 326)


It is increasingly common for firms to engage in both external and internal crowdsourcing to access ideas and solutions coming from external customers and internal employees. These IT platforms can be seen as forms of open and closed innovation search, where the first aims to perform distant search beyond the organizational boundaries, while the second is used to conduct local search within the firm. Nevertheless, limited attention has been placed on investigating which tensions emerge when firms combine these conflicting innovation search strategies and related management approaches to address them. By drawing on a qualitative, inductive case study of a large organization headquartered in France, our study identifies and discusses three key paradoxes emerging from pursuing both innovation forms: (1) paradox of identity; (2) paradox of organizing the innovation process; and (3) paradox of boundary management. Moreover, we discuss different management approaches implemented by managers to address the identified paradoxes.


Crowdsourcing platforms Paradoxes Open innovation 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Université Savoie-Mont-BlancChambéryFrance
  2. 2.Aarhus UniversityAarhusDenmark

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