April 14, 2014

OI special issue now online

Research Policy today announced that the last article of our special issue — “Open Innovation: New Insights and Evidence” — has been published online. All 10 articles (see below) are online at the Research Policy website, and will be in print in the June 2014 as Volume 43, Number 5.

In editing the special issue, we sought to shape how the field thinks about open innovation. We have a diverse body of research designs, that reflects the nature of the field today. (I will say more about the content of the special issue in a future posting).

About the Special Issue

Henry Chesbrough first suggested the special issue in September 2011, to mark the 10th anniversary of the publication of his original book, Open Innovation: The New Imperative for Creating and Profiting from Technology. In October, we confirmed the four guest editors — Henry Chesbrough, Ammon Salter, Wim Vanhaverbeke and Joel West.

Also in October, I spoke with two of the (then 10) editors of Research Policy to understand the process of approving and running a special issue, and from this we submitted our proposal to RP in December. The RP editors approved our proposal in March 2012, and then the call for papers went out immediately. We had conference papers submitted in April, a conference at Imperial College London in June, and then the official manuscripts were submitted in September 2012.

I don’t know much about the broader debate on the quality of special issue articles, but these papers went through a process every bit as rigorous as any other paper for a top journal like RP. Even if editors liked a paper, in the end we couldn’t publish the paper unless it satisfied the reviewers and met all the standards of the journal. While there are two peer-reviewed articles by the editors in the special issue, four were rejected: all six were handled subject to Research Policy’s conflict of interest policies.

The special issue took longer than we expected. At the beginning, the RP approval process took an extra three months because we didn’t realize that RP only considered such proposals twice a year. During the process, we underestimated how long reviewers would take (even with quick turnaround, 60 days is best case), how many rounds we’d need (most papers required three rounds) and various other delays that came along the way (such as when reviewers turned us down). The first paper was accepted in June 2013 and the 9th paper in December 2013.

Finally, the editors (particularly me) contributed their own delays that probably added another 2-3 months to the process. Editing a book (with an overlapping set of contributors) certainly didn’t help. Thus, our 10th anniversary special issue — unlike Henry’s 20th anniversary issue for Teece (1986) — is coming out about six months later than we had originally hoped.


We want to thank the Research Policy editors — particularly Ben Martin who led the approval and particularly Ashish Arora who saw everyone of the manuscripts — for their encouragement, support and patience in this process. We want to thank the many reviewers — top innovation scholars who remain anonymous — for their thoughtful and timely feedback on the submissions.

Most of all, we want to thank the authors. We (sincerely) appreciate the submissions that made the special issue possible, and wish nothing but the best for authors whose papers that did not make it all the way through the process. We also want to thank the authors of the accepted papers for their perseverance:

Oliver Alexy Teppo Felin Claudio Panico
Elif Bascavusoglu-Moreau Alfonso Gambardella Henning Piezunka
René Belderbos Joachim Henkel Evila Piva
Bruno Cassiman Alan Hughes Cristina Rossi-Lamastra
Massimo G. Colombo Keld Laursen Simone Schöberl
Linus Dahlander Bart Leten Bart Van Looy
Jingshu Du Andrea Mina Todd R. Zenger
Dries Faems

We hope that the articles will be an important milestone in the careers of these authors, and that innovation researchers will find these articles useful in how they think about open innovation going forward.

  1. Belderbos, René; Cassiman, Bruno; Faems, Dries; Leten, Bart; Van Looy, Bart. 2014. “Co-ownership of intellectual property: Exploring the value-appropriation and value-creation implications of co-patenting with different partners,” Research Policy 43 (5), DOI: 10.1016/j.respol.2013.08.013
  2. Colombo, Massimo G.; Piva, Evila; Rossi-Lamastra, Cristina. 2014. “Open innovation and within-industry diversification in small and medium enterprises: The case of open source software firms,” Research Policy 43 (5), DOI: 10.1016/j.respol.2013.08.015
  3. Dahlander, Linus; Piezunka, Henning. 2014. “Open to suggestions: How organizations elicit suggestions through proactive and reactive attention,” Research Policy 43 (5), DOI: 10.1016/j.respol.2013.06.006
  4. Du, Jingshu; Leten, Bart; Vanhaverbeke, Wim. 2014. “Does Open Innovation Improve the Performance of R&D Projects?” Research Policy 43 (5), DOI: 10.1016/j.respol.2013.12.008
  5. Felin, Teppo; Zenger, Todd R. 2014. “Closed or open innovation? Problem solving and the governance choice,” Research Policy 43 (5), DOI: 10.1016/j.respol.2013.09.006
  6. Gambardella, Alfonso; Panico, Claudio. 2014. “On the Management of Open Innovation,” Research Policy 43 (5), DOI: 10.1016/j.respol.2013.12.002
  7. Henkel, Joachim; Schöberl, Simone; Alexy, Oliver. 2014. “The emergence of openness: How firms learn selective revealing in open innovation,” Research Policy 43 (5), DOI: 10.1016/j.respol.2013.08.014
  8. Laursen, Keld; Salter, Ammon J. 2014. “The Paradox of Openness: Appropriability, External Search and Innovation Collaboration,” Research Policy 43 (5), DOI: 10.1016/j.respol.2013.10.004
  9. Mina, Andrea; Bascavusoglu-Moreau, Elif; Hughes, Alan. 2014. “Open service innovation and the firm’s search for external knowledge,” Research Policy 43 (5), DOI: 10.1016/j.respol.2013.07.004
  10. West, Joel, Salter, Ammon, Vanhaverbeke, Wim, Chesbrough, Henry. 2014. “Open innovation: The next decade,” Research Policy 43 (5), DOI: 10.1016/j.respol.2014.03.001

April 7, 2014

Research Policy: New Editorial Board

The leading journal of innovation studies, Research Policy, has announced perhaps the large change in years to its editorial board. This includes four new editors, four appointments to a new category of associate editor, and 41 new advisory editors. (The RP website has the former changes, but does not yet have the latter two categories of changes).

For open innovation researchers, a new editor (Keld Laursen) and associate editor (Joel West) are associated with open innovation, while Henry Chesbrough continues as an advisory editor.

New Editors

Research Policy is unusual in that it lacks a single editor, but instead is run by 11 nominally equal editors. Authors submit to one of these editors, who then assign reviewers and make the editorial decision.

Although there are 11 editors, 40% 35% of the 800-900 manuscripts come to the three editors at SPRU at the University of Sussex. The journal’s informal lead editor (Ben Martin) and its editorial assistant (“managing editor” at other journals) are found at the same institute where RP was founded 40 years ago by Chris Freeman and others.

Here is the new lineup of 11 editors:
  • Ashish Arora: Duke University (USA)
  • Maryann Feldman: UNC Chapel Hill (USA)
  • Martin Kenney: UC Davis (USA)
  • Stefan Kuhlmann: University of Twente (Netherlands)
  • Keld Laursen: Copenhagen Business School (Denmark)
  • Kenneth Lee: Seoul National University (Korea)
  • Ben Martin: SPRU, University of Sussex (UK)
  • Kazuyuki Motohashi: Tokyo University (Japan)
  • Paul Nightingale: SPRU, University of Sussex (UK)
  • Ed Steinmueller: SPRU, University of Sussex (UK)
  • Marie Thursby: Georgia Institute of Technology (USA)
Four of these are new editors who took office earlier this year:
  • Laursen and Motohashi were promoted from the Advisory Board;
  • Nightingale was previously book editor (a position that appears to be vacant); and
  • Feldman became an editor directly.
In 2013, Thursby was promoted from the advisory board. Meanwhile, two of last year's editors stepped down to become Advisory Editors.

Associate Editors

To deal with the increasing number of submissions, RP editors have also created a new position of Associate Editor, and appointed four people to this new position:
The editors will delegate a subset of their manuscripts to one of the associate editors in his/her area of expertise. The AE will pick reviewers and make editorial decisions based on reviewer recommendations.

Additional associate editors are expected to be named in coming years.

Advisory Editors

RP continues its system of Advisory Editors, who (as at many journals) commit to providing regular reviews. In the current update, RP has appointed 41 new Advisory Editors:

  • Kazuhiro Asakawa: Keio University (Japan)
  • Thomas Astebro: HEC Paris (France)
  • Suma Athreye: Brunel University (UK)
  • Janet Bercovitz: University of Illinois (USA)
  • Stefano Breschi: Bocconi University (Italy)
  • Steve Casper: Keck Graduate Institute (USA)
  • Elizabeth Corley: Arizona State University (USA)
  • Pablo D'Este: Polytechnic University of Valencia (Spain)
  • Gabriela Dutrenit: Autonomous University of Mexico (Mexico)
  • Kira Fabrizio: Boston University (USA)
  • Koen Frenken: Eindhoven University of Technology (Netherlands)
  • Erica Fuchs: Carnegie Mellon University (USA)
  • Jeffrey Funk: National University of Singapore (Singapore)
  • Jeff Furman: Boston University (USA)
  • Michelle Gittelman: Rutgers University (USA)
  • Shane Greenstein: Kellogg School, Northwestern University (USA)
  • Rosa Grimaldi: University of Bologna (Italy)
  • Karin Hoisl: Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (Germany)
  • Mei-Chih Hu: National Tsing Hua University (Taiwan)
  • Julia Lane: American Institutes for Research (USA)
  • Sungjoo Lee: Ajou University (Korea)
  • Aija Leiponen: Cornell & Imperial College London (USA/UK)
  • Kwanghui Lim: Melbourne Business School (Australia)
  • Francesco Lissoni: University of Brescia (Italy)
  • Xiaohui Liu: Loughborough University (UK)
  • Xielin Liu: University of Chinese Academy of Sciences (China)
  • Vincent Mangematin: Grenoble Ecole de Management (France)
  • Myriam Mariani: Bocconi University (Italy)
  • Matt Marx: Massachusetts Institute of Technology (USA)
  • Gregory Nemet: University of Wisconsin (USA)
  • Walter G. Park: American University (USA)
  • Andrea Prencipe: LUISS Rome (Italy)
  • Bhaven N. Sampat: Columbia University (USA)
  • Henry Sauermann: Georgia Institute of Technology (USA)
  • Maria Savona: SPRU, University of Sussex (UK)
  • Laurel Smith-Doerr: Boston University (USA)
  • Bruce Tether: Manchester University (UK)
  • Bernhard Truffer: Eawag (Switzerland)
  • Bruno van Pottelsberghe: Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management (Belgium)
  • Reinhilde Veugelers: KU Leuven (Belgium)
  • Richard C.M. Yam: City University of Hong Kong (Hong Kong)
The Advisory Board includes 41 new to the board, 41 Advisory Editors continuing from last year, and two former Editors who are now Advisory Editors.


With Laursen, West and (of course) Chesbrough on the editorial board, the opportunities for publishing OI research in Research Policy seem better than ever. Meanwhile, Eric von Hippel and two of his regular co-authors (Dietmar Harhoff and Joachim Henkel) remain on the Advisory Board to review user innovation manuscripts.

I'm also proud to note that one of the 41 new advisory editors is my colleague and boss, Steve Casper (interim dean at KGI). He is an oft-cited scholar on topics such as biotech spinoffs and high-tech clusters. This means that 50% of the business faculty of KGI are on the RP editorial board, which I think is an unusual ratio for RP (or any journal). In fact, a third faculty member, Jay Chok, has also published in Research Policy, bringing our RP publication rate up to 75%.

By comparison, SPRU has 6 editorial board members (3 editors, 1 associate editor and 2 advisory editors) out of 49 faculty (or 28 if you only count the lecturers, senior lecturers and professors). After SPRU, the next largest concentrations of RP editorial board members are
  • Five: Bocconi
  • Four: Berkeley and MIT
  • Three: Georgia Tech and Toronto
  • Two: Boston U., Colombia, Duke, Harvard, KGI, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität, NUS
Congratulations to the new RP editorial board members. We all look forward to helping support innovation studies and one of its leading outlets.

March 30, 2014

CFP: Business and Economic Impacts of 3D Printing

On June 3, Frank Piller and I will be hosting a half-day research workshop in Aachen entitled “The Business and Economic Impacts of 3D Printing”.

The idea of the workshop is to have innovation researchers consider the implications that 3D printing have for innovation, manufacturing and the nature of the firm. While 3D printing originated in the 1980s as a rapid prototyping tool, today it is intersecting with other topics such as open source (aka open design) communities, online data repositories, and manufacturing-as-a-service business models.

In this workshop we are hoping to bring academics from engineering, economics and management to discuss current and future research projects, with an emphasis on developmental feedback..The sessions will also include conversations with industry leaders about current challenges for the 3D printing industry.

The workshop will be held June 3 from 12:00-6:00 p.m. at RWTH Aachen University, followed by a reception and dinner. It is cosponsored by RWTH and the Keck Graduate Institute. We are also expecting researchers from Cambridge and Technische Universität München, and welcome participants from other schools.

Researchers interested in presenting should e-mail Frank Piller or Joel West by April 15. Please include the title, a 200-300 word abstract, the authors and the name of the presenter. Space is limited, but those interested in attending without presenting (including co-authors) should also e-mail by April 15.

March 25, 2014

New Frontiers in Open Innovation

Production started last week on our latest book on open innovation, entitled New Frontiers in Open Innovation. Oxford University Press will begin printing the book in September, and the publication date (retail availability) is scheduled for October.

As with the 2006 book — Open Innovation: Researching a New Paradigm — the 2014 book was organized and edited by Henry Chesbrough, Wim Vanhaverbeke and myself. It is in some ways a sequel to the earlier book: an academic book that tries to capture the state of the art of open innovation research.

Unlike in 2006, today there has been a considerable body of research that was already published. Many of the chapters in the book review the prior research in a variety of areas, including open innovation with SMEs, MNCs, intermediaries, nonprofits, and consumers.

A total of 23 authors contributed 15 chapters:
  • Ferrie Aalders, Philips Research
  • Kazuhiro Asakawa, Keio University
  • Caroline Bishop, IXC
  • Marcel Bogers, Southern Denmark University
  • Sabine Brunswicker, Fraunhofer Institute
  • Henry Chesbrough, UC Berkeley
  • Jens Frøslev Christensen, Copenhagen Business School
  • Myriam Cloodt, Eindhoven University of Technology
  • Alberto Di Minin, Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna
  • Jingshu Du, Vlerick Business School and Hasselt University
  • Roya Ghafele, Edinburgh University
  • Sang Ji Kim, Seoul National University
  • Bart Leten, University of Leuven and Vlerick Business School
  • Tim Minshall, University of Cambridge
  • Letizia Mortara, University of Cambridge
  • Frank Piller, RWTH Aachen
  • Nadine Roijakkers, Maastricht University
  • Jaeyong Song, Seoul National University
  • Vareska van de Vrande, Rotterdam School of Management
  • Wim Vanhaverbeke, University of Hasselt
  • Joel West, Keck Graduate Institute
  • Christopher S. Winter, New Venture Partners
  • Andy Zynga, NineSigma
In 2006, our forward was by written by David Teece. This time, the forward (“Open Innovation and Knowledge Creation”) was written by Ikujiro Nonaka, the famed author of The Knowledge-Creating Company.

The final chapter (by Vanhaverbeke et al) offers the most comprehensive taxonomic review I’ve seen of the open innovation research. Our final chapter from 2006 has more than 150 citations. I’m hoping that Wim’s chapter is even more useful to future OI scholars.

We are hoping to make the chapters available to researchers in the next month or two. I’l post again — and comment on specific chapters — when these chapters are available.

March 16, 2014

The Top Innovation Journals

Most American business schools draw a distinction between general and specialty (or “field”) journals for specialties such as innovation. The best of the former are dubbed “A” journals, and at many “Top 25” schools, the only publications that count towards tenure are the “A” pubs.

In Canada and other places outside the U.S., the only journals that count are the 45 journals used by the Financial Times b-school rankings It includes the standard "A" journals in management, marketing, accounting and finance, and adds the three top managerial journals, two entrepreneurial journals and a few other less obvious journals. (No innovation journals are included).

All of these rankings are based on citation metrics, on the presumption that the more oft-cited articles are “better”, “more important” or at least more influential. The expert in this field is Anne-Wil Harzing (who has studied such metrics, makes ranking software and has spent 15 years integrating the various journal ranking lists). Here are some thoughts about different measures that might identify the “top” innovation journals.

Ranking of Innovation Journals

When writing my own work, working with co-authors, or mentoring junior scholars, I often ask (or am asked): where is the “best” place to publish this paper? Since my work — like those who care to ask my opinion — is almost entirely about innovation, the question is on finding the “best” innovation journal.

Fortunately, Tek Thongpapanl has provided hard data about innovation-related journals, using citations from articles published in leading innovation journals (Linton & Thongpapanl, 2004; Thongpapanl, 2012). To deal with the problem of coercive citations — where editors of lesser journals demand citations to their journal as a condition of publication — he provides rankings with and without journal self-citations.

His studies suggest two top journals for innovation management: Research Policy and the Journal of Product Innovation Management.† The next tier are more difficult to define, but the most recent study suggests (in alphabetical order) Industrial & Corporate Change, R&D Management and Technovation. (Both studies ranked highly Research-Technology Management, a journal that tends to publish more firsthand managerial papers than academic studies.)

† I'm not saying this because I have articles coming out in both this year. I would have said this in January 2012 when I received a preprint of Thongpapanl (2012).

Journal Citation Reports

Another source of rankings are the Journal Citation Reports, published by Thomson. I used 2012 data to search for Business, Finance, Economics, Information Science, Management and Sociology journals.

From the top 100 journals (sorted by 5-year impact factor), below are selected FT, innovation, entrepreneurship and strategy journals. (Journals marked * are part of the FT 45; innovation journals in bold.)

1. Academy of Management Review*
2. Journal of Economic Literature
3. Academy of Management Journal*
4. Quarterly Journal of Economics*
5. Journal of Management
6. Administrative Science Quarterly*
7. MIS Quarterly*
12. Strategic Management Journal*
13. Journal of Finance*
16. Journal of Marketing*
20. Organization Science*
30. Journal of Management Studies*
32. Research Policy
35. American Economic Review*
39. Org Behavior and Human Decision Processes*
45. Journal of Business Venturing*
54. Information Systems Research*
55. Strategic Organization
62. Journal of Marketing Research*
65. Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice*
67. Technovation
74. Organization Studies*
80. Journal of Product Innovation Management
82. Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal
85. Management Science*

In other words, Research Policy is equivalent to AER, Technovation to Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice and JPIM to Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal (and ahead of what many consider the gold standard, Management Science).

The next highest innovation journals are R&D Management (156) and Industrial and Corporate Change (162), roughly equivalent to two leading specialty journals, Human Resource Management (155) and Small Business Economics (157). Rounding out the top 250 are the Journal of Technology Transfer (206) and IEEE Transactions in Engineering Management (218).

Unlike Tek’s measures, these do not include corrections for self-citations, so the rankings of journals with high self-citation rates should be taken with a grain of salt.

Ranking by h5-index

A final metric are the Google Scholar Metrics, a family of tools based on the Google index of journals, conference, working papers and monographs. The latest metrics “are currently based on our index as it was in July 2013.”

In particular, it offers metrics based on the Hirsch h-index. As Google explains
The h-index of a publication is the largest number h such that at least h articles in that publication were cited at least h times each. For example, a publication with five articles cited by, respectively, 17, 9, 6, 3, and 2, has the h-index of 3.

h5-index is the h-index for articles published in the last 5 complete years. It is the largest number h such that h articles published in 2008-2012 have at least h citations each.
Harzing and Daniel Baker discuss the merits of the h- and h5-index.

Based on the 2008-2012 data, Google has compiled a list of the top innovation and entrepreneurship journals:

Top publications - Entrepreneurship & Innovation

1.Research Policy73
2.Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice52
3.Journal of Business Venturing51
5.Small Business Economics46
6.Journal of Product Innovation Management39
7.Journal of Small Business Management35
8.R&D Management34
9.The Journal of Technology Transfer31
10.International Small Business Journal27
11.Journal of Intellectual Capital26
12.International Entrepreneurship and
Management Journal
13.Entrepreneurship and Regional Development25
14.Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal23
15.Technology Analysis & Strategic
16.Economics of Innovation and New
17.European Journal of Innovation Management22
18.International Journal of Innovation
19.Industry and Innovation21
20.International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour & Research21
Dates and citation counts are estimated and are determined automatically by a computer program.
If you compare this to the overall list of “Business, Economics and Management” journals, it produces a stunning conclusion. With an h5-value of 73, Research Policy ranks after 8 finance and economics journals (including AER, J. Finance, J. Financial Economics and QJE). However, it ranks ahead of all strategy and other management journals, including SMJ, AMJ, MISQ, Management Science, J. Marketing and Organization Science.

What does this mean? It means that Research Policy — unknown to most tenure committees — has more high-impact articles than but a handful of the “A” journals that count for tenure at most schools.


My friends and colleagues in innovation, entrepreneurship and other specialties can be divided into three categories

  1. Those who play the “A” game, either because they believe in it or because they feel they can’t beat the system.
  2. Those who reject the whole journal ranking game as being an imperfect proxy for research quality, and argue for direct measures of article quality (such as article citations).
  3. Those who believe the current “A” system undervalues quality research in so-called “B” journals, and thus want to use the rules of journal and article “quality” to gain greater recognition for good work published elsewhere.
If asked by a junior scholar what to do, I would point out the strong interaction effect between his/her choice of publishing strategy and the sort of employers they select (or that select them).


Linton, Jonathan D., and Narongsak Tek Thongpapanl. "Ranking the Technology Innovation Management Journals." Journal of Product Innovation Management 21, no. 2 (2004): 123-139. doi: 10.1111/j.0737-6782.2004.00062.x

Thongpapanl, Narongsak Tek. "The changing landscape of technology and innovation management: An updated ranking of journals in the field." Technovation 32, no. 5 (2012): 257-271. doi: 10.1016/j.technovation.2012.01.001