A network perspective on idea and innovation crowdsourcing in industrial firms

Henri Simula, Tuomas Ahola

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

    81 Citations (Scopus)


    Crowdsourcing has been attracting the attention of both academics and practitioners over recent years. The aim of this article is to contribute to the current body of knowledge on innovation in networked contexts by systematically analyzing various crowdsourcing configurations available to industrial firms. We first develop a categorization of crowdsourcing in industrial firms comprising four distinct configurations: internal crowdsourcing; community crowdsourcing; open crowdsourcing; and crowdsourcing via a broker. We then proceed to draw from the literature on industry networks to further deepen our understanding of how these four distinct configurations can contribute to business and innovation activities of a focal industrial firm. Specifically, we focus on the structural properties, nature of collaboration, and governance of crowdsourcing networks. This novel combination of crowdsourcing and network research delivers new insights that enrich current understanding on various options available to industrial firms operating in networked contexts to facilitate their innovation processes.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)400-408
    Number of pages9
    JournalIndustrial Marketing Management
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2014
    Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • Crowdsourcing
    • Crowdsourcing configurations
    • Industrial firms
    • Innovation
    • Networks

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Marketing


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