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Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to systematically review the existing research and summarize the value co-creation mechanism between enterprises and users in crowdsource-based open innovation (COI). Design/methodology/approach – Crowdsourcing is an effective means for enterprises to launch open innovation. This paper will ﬁrst introduce the concepts and forms of open innovation and crowdsourcing, and then deﬁne COI. Findings – This paper will analyze the key parties in innovative tasks, value co-creation mechanism that creates ideas, the interaction of key participants and the process of integrating internal and external resources to realize open innovation. Research limitations/implications – In the end, this paper will put forward the theoretical framework for future studies on the development of COI from the perspective of value co-creation. Originality/value – This thesis will ﬁrst introduce the concepts and forms of open innovation and outsourcing and then deﬁne COI. Then it will systematically review the existing research studies and summarize the value co-creation mechanism between enterprises and users under COI model by analyzing the key parties in innovative tasks, value co-creation mechanism that creates ideas, the interaction mode of key participants and the process of enterprises integrating internal and external resources to realize open innovation. Keywords Value co-creation, Crowdsourcing-based open innovation, Users’ ideas Paper type Literature review © Qian Liu, Xin Zhao and Baowen Sun. Published in the International Journal of Crowd Science. Published by Emerald Publishing Limited. This article is published under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) licence. Anyone may reproduce, distribute, translate and create derivative works of this article (for both commercial and non-commercial purposes), subject to full attribution to International Journal of Crowd Science the original publication and authors. The full terms of this licence may be seen at http:// creativecommons.org/licences/by/4.0/legalcode pp. 2-17 Emerald Publishing Limited This work is supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (71702206, 2398-7294 DOI 10.1108/IJCS-01-2018-0001 71402136), the National Key Research and Development Plan of China (2017YFB1400101). 1. Introduction Crowdsource- Innovation is at the core of the knowledge-based economy, and it creates enormous social based open and economic value (Marjanovic et al., 2012). Traditional innovation relies on the efforts innovation within a single enterprise or a limited number of enterprises with complementary technologies (Chesbrough, 2003a, 2003b). However, open innovation challenges this traditional concept by encouraging companies to break conventions and existing thought patterns. Chesbrough (2006) deﬁned open innovation as the way enterprises integrate both internal and external knowledge ﬂow to motivate internal innovation, as well as seek out external channels to commercialize the outcome. The core idea of open innovation is to integrate knowledge, skills and ideas from the public (Chesbrough, 2003a, 2003b; Chesbrough, 2012). It is notable that open innovation should become an integrated part of internal research and development rather than replace it, as agreed by Chesbrough and Crowther (2006), Spithoven et al. (2011) and Marjanovic et al. (2012). The studies of Dahlander and Gann (2010), Cohen and Levinthal (1990) and Laursen and Salter (2006) indicated that open innovation can stimulate companies to integrate and use external knowledge, technologies and resources. In the current service economy era, users are regarded as value co-creators; the knowledge and technologies they provide have become an important strategic resources of enterprises (Lusch and Vargo, 2006). With the rapid development of Web 2.0 (online sharing platforms), companies can gather a wider range of users through crowdsourcing, thus acquiring external knowledge, technologies and resources at a lower cost (Brabham, 2009). Crowdsourcing, deﬁned by Howe (2008), is the act of taking a task once performed by an employee and outsourcing it to a large, undeﬁned group of people external to the company in the form of an open call. Crowdsourcing stimulates companies to participate in open innovation, especially in research and development programs (Dodgson et al.,2006). Take the case of Xiaomi, this company enables users to participate in the innovation of their phone’s MIUI operating system through the MIUI Forum, allowing Xiaomi to collect valuable ideas and then apply them into new versions of the MIUI operating system. Such innovation has adapted MIUI to the demands and habits of Chinese consumers and helped win more than 170 million users. This paper focuses on the combination of open innovation and crowdsourcing, in which companies acquire knowledge, technologies and resources from users by crowdsourcing on online platforms, thus achieving the open innovation of products. Crowdsource-based open innovation (COI) is deﬁned as the process by which enterprises crowdsource and organize users to participate in open innovation tasks, to realize value co-creation between users’ ideas and internal resources. Web 2.0 technology is a crucial tool in this process, which provides a communication platform for the exchange of information and effective value co- creation activities between enterprises and users. Web 2.0 technology not only enables enterprises to launch open innovation projects but also encourages continuous interaction among users and the enterprise (Dodgson et al.,2006). Through this value co-creation process, enterprises ultimately promote and enhance innovation (Chanal and Caron-Fasan, 2010; Schenk and Guittard, 2011; Kohler, 2015). This paper will ﬁrst discuss the concepts of open innovation and crowdsourcing and try to deﬁne COI, then it will analyze the value co-creation mechanism underlying COI and discuss the following issues: the key parties in innovation tasks and their interactions; and the value co-creation mechanism of innovation and the realization of open innovation by integrating internal and external resources. Finally, it will summarize the main conclusions and put forward a theoretical framework for IJCS further studies. 2,1 2. Concept 2.1 Open innovation 2.1.1 Deﬁnition of open innovation. The term open innovation was ﬁrst promoted by Chesbrough (2003a, 2003b) in his work titled Open Innovation. The academic world has generated various deﬁnitions of the term open innovation. Laursen and Salter (2006) provided a representative deﬁnition: open innovation is the extensive and thorough open search strategy adopted by enterprises to achieve greater innovation. In this deﬁnition, Laursen equated openness with external innovation resources and their relationships. However, Henkel (2006) held that openness refers to uncovering undiscovered internal ideas. The deﬁnitions given by Laursen and Henkel showed that openness can be run two ways, both inwardly and outwardly (Henkel, 2006; Laursen and Salter, 2006). Combining the two deﬁnitions, Chesbrough et al. (2006) deﬁned open innovation as the way enterprises integrate both internal and external knowledge ﬂow to motivate internal innovation, as well as seek out external channels to commercialize the outcome. Openness indicates that commercialization projects will develop by various methods simultaneously, and therefore, various methods and channels should also be used to launch the products (Chesbrough, 2006; Chesbrough et al., 2006; Chesbrough, 2012). 2.1.2 Forms of open innovation. Open innovation mainly takes three forms: outside-in, inside-out and two-way innovation (Gassmann and Enkel, 2004; Huizingh, 2011; Cui et al., 2015). Outside-in open innovation refers to the way that enterprises search, obtain and integrate exterior knowledge or technology (from suppliers, customers, partners, etc.) into interior development work to promote innovation performance (Chesbrough and Crowther, 2006; Chiaroni et al., 2010). Openness encourages breaking boundaries and the introduction of external resources from customers and other companies (Arora and Gambardella, 1990; Von Hippel, 2005). Research by Enkel et al. (2009) and Laursen and Salter (2006) suggested that introducing external knowledge and technologies will help enterprises enhance innovation performances. Enkel’s study showed that 78 per cent of external knowledge resources comes from customers, 61 per cent from suppliers, 49 per cent from competitors, 21 per cent from public and commercial research centers and 65 per cent from others. A growing number of companies are achieving inside-out open innovation via innovation media platforms, such as Dell’s IdeaStorm (Bayus, 2013) and LEGO Cussoo (Schlagwein and Andersen, 2014). Inside-out open innovation is deﬁned as the process by which enterprises commercialize internal innovative technologies and earn proﬁts by various means, including technology licensing, building subsidiary corporations, joint ventures and allying with others (Chesbrough and Crowther, 2006; Enkel et al.,2009). Openness is reﬂected in how enterprises expand the ways in which they launch innovative programs through cooperation with other organizations and partners. As argued by Enkel et al. (2009), the key to inside-out open innovation is to externalize knowledge and innovation so that the programs can be commercialized by external methods, which will be more time-efﬁcient and effective than internal means. Large and medium enterprises are more willing to implement inside-out open innovation in their sub-projects (Enkel et al.,2009). Two-way open innovation is deﬁned as the process in which enterprises combine the inside-out (to acquire knowledge) and outside-in (to launch internal ideas to market) channels to promote the development and commercialization of innovation programs (Cui et al.,2015). Gassmann and Enkel (2004) put forward the idea that corporations should cooperate with each other in strategic networks to achieve two-way open innovation. For Crowdsource- example, BWM’s Palo Alto Technology Ofﬁce has implemented multiple inside-out and based open outside-in partnerships with different industries. One such partnership with local game innovation companies resulted in development of the control rod technique (Gassmann and Enkel, 2004). 2.2 Crowdsourcing 2.2.1 Deﬁnition of crowdsourcing. The term crowdsourcing was ﬁrst put forward by Howe (2006a, 2006b) in his article, Wired Magazine, which has attracted enormous attention from academics and the business ﬁeld as a whole. As he deﬁned it, crowdsourcing is the act of taking a task once performed by an employee and outsourcing it to a large, undeﬁned group of people external to the company in the form of an open call (Howe, 2008). Brabham (2009) deﬁned crowdsourcing as the process in which enterprises adopt a strategic model to attract interested and motivated individuals to provide solutions, in quantity and quality, which are usually accomplished by traditional organizational structures and procedures. In the above two deﬁnitions, they both stressed that, in crowdsourcing, the job is undertaken by the general public rather than internal personnel. But the differences lie in that Howe underlined the uncertainty of the public, whereas Brabham focused on the interests and incentives of the public; and that Howe emphasized the appeal for public input, whereas Brabham did not stress this as a signiﬁcant factor in crowdsourcing. 2.2.2 The forms of crowdsourcing. Crowdsourcing mainly takes three forms: cooperative crowdsourcing, competitive crowdsourcing (Bayus, 2013; Pedersen et al.,2013; Zhao and Zhu, 2014) and candidate crowdsourcing (Ye and Kankanhalli, 2013). Cooperative crowdsourcing means users participate and cooperate in innovative tasks and produce ideas (Bayus, 2013). Di Gangi et al. (2010) and Howe (2006a, 2006b) suggested that interaction and cooperation continues constantly among users and between the enterprise and users and that these interactions take place on intermediary platforms. These intermediary platforms act as information systems to help enterprises build connections with users and collect the knowledge, technologies and solutions they share, as well as help them select and rate the proposals users submit (Ye and Kankanhalli, 2013). Users voluntarily take part in innovative tasks for new products in response to an open call from a company; they participate out of love for the brand, not for economic reward. From this process, they will gain products and services which better cater to their needs, knowledge and abilities related to their interests, joy and personal fulﬁllment (Djelassi and Decoopman, 2013). These beneﬁts are the main incentives for users to continuously submit proposals and take part in cooperative crowdsourcing. Examples of cooperative platforms include Dell’s IdeaStorm (Bayus, 2013) and MIUI Forum of Xiaomi Company. Competitive crowdsourcing allows users to choose tasks and submit ideas at their will. Enterprises can then select and reward the optimal idea that could be a single one or a multistage one (Terwiesch and Xu, 2008). Yang et al. (2008) thought that competitive crowdsourcing is more suitable for short term and clearly deﬁned tasks, for instance, inviting users to design logos. Users barely interact or cooperate with others, but they may have some interaction with company representatives. Information systems help enterprises release tasks to users and select the optimal one from users’ submissions. They can ensure users submit proposals individually without being inﬂuenced by others as well as enabling users and company representatives to communicate with each other (Ye and Kankanhalli, 2013). For users, their primary incentive for competing in crowdsourcing tasks is to win the competition and earn economic rewards (Zheng et al.,2014); enhancing their abilities and gaining a sense of accomplishment are just supplementary beneﬁts. Examples of competitive crowdsourcing platforms include Topcoder.com (Archak, 2010) and TaskCn IJCS (Yang et al., 2008). 2,1 Candidate crowdsourcing occurs when enterprises choose candidates and cooperate closely with them to complete innovative tasks (Bullinger et al.,2010; Morgan and Wang, 2010). Candidate crowdsourcing suits tasks that require close and long-term cooperation between companies and speciﬁc partners (Ye and Kankanhalli, 2013). During this process, cooperation and knowledge sharing will occur constantly among candidates and between companies and candidates (Pisano and Verganti, 2008). Via information systems, companies select candidates and build connection with them, they will also share knowledge through these platforms (Ye and Kankanhalli, 2013). However, Chen et al. (2010) advocated that enterprises should give more time and energy to fostering cooperation and knowledge sharing between companies and candidates. The primary incentive for candidates to get involved is to complete the task and earn money (Ye and Kankanhalli, 2013). Examples of candidate crowdsourcing platforms include InnoCentive and NineSigma. 2.2.3 Crowdsource-based open innovation. From the perspective of open innovation, crowdsourcing can facilitate the launch of an open innovation strategy, whereas, from the perspective of crowdsourcing, open innovation is one of the many goals crowdsourcing can realize. To be more speciﬁc, some open innovation practices may not be achieved by crowdsourcing (for instance, when companies cooperate with others in the same industry); conversely, a certain crowdsourcing project may not aim to achieve open innovation (for instance, crowdfunding). Therefore, this thesis focuses on the combination of open innovation and crowdsourcing, namely, COI. COI is deﬁned as the process by which enterprises organize users to participate in open innovation tasks by crowdsourcing them on Web 2.0 platforms, to realize value co-creation between the users’ ideas and the enterprise’s internal resources. The organizational form of crowdsourcing helps enterprises launch outside-in open innovation strategies. To achieve open innovation, enterprises outsource a task traditionally accomplished by internal staff to an undeﬁned group of external users to acquire external knowledge and technology. Chanal and Caron-Fasan (2010) argued that crowdsourcing is an effective way for enterprises to expand their internal boundaries and implement open innovative activities. Lilien and State (2002) stated that the organizational form of crowdsourcing, known as open call, and its targets, the users, will not only provide additional knowledge, technologies and resources but also save enterprises from long and repetitive product testing, thereby getting products to launch sooner. 3. Crowdsource-based open innovation’s value co-creation mechanism 3.1 Key participants of innovation tasks 3.1.1 Users. Users are the consumers of an enterprise’s products who voluntarily participate in innovation tasks and submit solutions or ideas out of their own interests or love of the products (Djelassi and Decoopman, 2013). In the era of the service economy, users have evolved from passive product recipients to value co-creators (Walter et al.,2001; Witell et al., 2011; Zhang et al.,2011). Vargo and Lusch proposed in their 2004 and 2006 research papers that enterprises and users interact, exchanging knowledge or skills, in an open manner to realize value co-creation, thereby enhancing the enterprise’s performance and better satisfying the users’ needs. In other words, enterprises and users are both the co-creators of value and the beneﬁciaries of value co-creation. Lusch and Vargo (2006) argued that users play a key role in value co-creation and their interactions with the enterprise is at the core of the value co-creation process. Prahalad and Ramaswamy (2013) put forward that value co- creation is achieved by integrating the enterprise’s internal and external resources, which, as suggested by Vargo and Lusch (2004), allows enterprises and users to achieve common Crowdsource- beneﬁts by sharing their knowledge or skills. based open 3.1.2 Enterprise experts. Enterprise experts are research and development experts innovation within an organization, who lead and represent the organization in value co-creation activities. Enterprise experts are hired professionals and technical staff, so they have a dual role of business representative and industry expert. Enterprise experts launch innovation tasks and call for participation from users. They then screen, evaluate and provide feedback on the users’ submissions, and ultimately determine the solution to enter the internal R&D process. In addition, enterprise experts are responsible for organizing various activities and coordinating relationships. In the process of value co-creation, enterprise experts play multiple roles, such as experts, managers, leaders and partners. Di Gangi et al. (2010) proposed that enterprises should strategically arrange key personnel to participate in innovative online communities, to ensure users’ ideas can be identiﬁed quickly and eventually adopted by the enterprise, as well as to promote communication between users and the enterprise, and encourage an exchange of knowledge within the community (Di Gangi et al., 2010). Business representatives generally have a strong background in professional knowledge and practical product development, including detailed knowledge of the product’s features and cost structures (Di Gangi et al., 2010). Therefore, as the leader, the enterprise expert is the other key participant in value co-creation activities. They use their dual identities of enterprise representative and industry expert to work with users to realize value co-creation of open innovation in new products. 3.2 Value co-creation mechanism of idea generation Ideas are creative opinions or solutions that users provide for innovative product development and design tasks (Amabile et al., 2005). Below, we will analyze the value co- creation mechanism of idea generation, as shown in Figure 1. 3.2.1 In the ﬁrst phase, enterprises choose the form of crowdsourcing and deﬁne the task requirements. Initially, the process of idea generation encourages users to participate in new product innovation tasks in the form of public outreach by enterprise experts. At the same time, enterprises need to choose the form of crowdsourcing and deﬁne the requirements of innovation tasks. Enterprises launch new product innovation tasks by making an open call for contributions. For example, Dell’s IdeaStorms platform calls on users to tell them what new products or services they want (Bayus, 2013); the new feature Discussion on Xiaomi’s MIUI Forum calls for users to discuss what kind of MIUI mobile operating system features they want. Through LEGO case studies, Andersen et al. (2013) argued that enterprises that develop interesting innovation tasks, which are perceived as trustworthy and fair, are conducive for stimulating the creative potential of users. In releasing innovation tasks, enterprises should choose the appropriate form of crowdsourcing and deﬁne the task requirements at the same time. Cooperative, competitive and candidate crowdsourcing all have different advantages. To obtain high-quality ideas, enterprises should match the appropriate form of crowdsourcing to the innovation task with different characteristics (as shown in Table I)(Bullinger et al.,2010). Then, enterprises should set standard procedures for users to submit ideas. For example, the new feature Discussion in the MIUI Forum requires users to ﬁrst correctly classify their feature suggestion, then describe the recommendation and give examples of scenarios in which the feature may be used, and then “tell (@)” to submit the suggestion to the relevant development group. Di Gangi et al. (2010) proposed that enterprises should create a user IJCS 2,1 Products / services more catering to users’ needs 偠偠 ᬊᬊ ӏӏ ߯߯ Figure 1. Value co-creation mechanism of COI communities Consumer Crowdsourcing group Respond to enterprises’ Users 2. Validate Potential publicity Products / services more 1. 4. Value co-creation Submit ideas User awareness catering to users’ needs Give feedback rate, Call for users’ participation Technology Browse ideas Image comment on Mechanism of idea Enhancement of Choose the form of crowdsourcing Ability Organize activities Vote and rate Sales volume Individual ability generation Define task requirements Ideas Comment on ideas Customer relations Joy, personal honor, remuneraon Coordinate relationships Enterprise experts professionals, managerial personnel Sorting Screening Enterprises’ external resources Idea collection of new products Open innovation Enterprises’ internal R D process Enterprises’ internal New products / services Crowdsource- Cooperative Competitive Candidate based open Items crowdsourcing crowdsourcing crowdsourcing innovation Process Users notice the open call Enterprises release tasks Enterprises recruit of enterprises and and invite users to settle candidates and cooperate intermediary agents, them; then choose the with them to accomplish and then submit best one and reward the the task proposals. Enterprises winner 9 and users go through and comment on the proposals together Features of tasks Long term and Short term and clearly Closely connected and continuously opened task deﬁned task long-term cooperation task Interaction and Continuous cooperation Users barely cooperate Candidates and cooperation among users and with each other; enterprise frequently between users and company representatives interact with each other enterprise and users may interact a and share knowledge representatives little Role of the Encourages enterprises Helps enterprises Help enterprises select Information System and users to build forward tasks to users candidates and contact connections and collect and choose the best with them; encourages plans; allows enterprises proposal; makes sure knowledge sharing and and users to rate, vote for users submit proposals storing among and comment on individually; allows for candidates proposals connection between users and companies Incentives of Primary user incentives Primary user incentives Primary candidate participating users are: the creation of are: winning the incentives are: products and services competition and gaining accomplishing the task that cater to their needs; economic returns and obtaining the enhancement of payment individual knowledge and ability; joy and personal fulﬁlment Table I. Crowdsourcing Dell’s IdeaStorm; MIUI Topcoder.com; Taskcn InnoCentive; NineSigma Features of the forms platforms Forum of Xiaomi Company of crowdsourcing toolkit to standardize the rules for idea generation and submission; these measures not only help reﬁne the details of users’ ideas but also avoid repetitions more effectively. 3.2.2 In the second phase, users submit and evaluate ideas. After the enterprise releases the innovation tasks, users continuously submit ideas. At the same time, the user browses ideas submitted by fellow users and engage in interactive activities such as voting, rating and commenting. In this phase, enterprises gain resources, such as technologies, abilities and ideas, from users to support product innovation research and development projects (Djelassi and Decoopman, 2013). Users conceptualize and elaborate on ideas in a variety of ways. Di Gangi et al. (2010) suggested that enterprises should pay close attention to the ideas of lead users, as their intimate, ﬁrst-hand knowledge allows them imagine creative ways to improve existing technologies and methods. Schlagwein and Andersen (2014) presented LEGO users’ toy ideas which were submitted to the LEGO Cussoo platform in words, illustrations, pictures and more. Enterprises get unique non-professional users’ ideas which add to the traditional IJCS internal organizational learning. 2,1 In the generation of ideas, users can simultaneously produce their own ideas while browsing others within the community and then vote for, rate and comment on them. The interaction among users not only promotes constant modiﬁcation of ideas but also encourages the exchange of opinions and expertise (Di Gangi et al.,2010), thereby greatly improving the quality of the ideas. Di Gangi et al. (2010) suggested that enterprises strongly promote the self-governance and continuous interaction among users as it is these users who will help the enterprise identify the most promising ideas among the large number submitted by the community. Djelassi and Decoopman (2013) proposed that users conceptualize and submit ideas while maintaining continuous interaction with each other. Based on the above activity analysis, the enterprise ﬁnally obtains the external resources, such as technologies, abilities and ideas, from users, which is of great signiﬁcance to the success of enterprise innovation projects. 3.2.3 In the third phase, enterprise experts evaluate users’ ideas. After the submission of ideas, COI enters the next crucial step, i.e. enterprise experts evaluate users’ ideas. Enterprise experts mainly implement three types of activities: evaluating ideas, organizing community activities and coordinating relationships. At this phase, users gain beneﬁts such as products or services that cater more to their needs, experience and enhanced skills and personal enjoyment and fulﬁllment. Enterprise experts evaluate whether the user’s idea meets the requirements, how innovative it is, how it can be implemented or improved and so on. Enterprise experts interact with users by browsing, rating and commenting on ideas. Di Gangi et al. (2010) argued that when integrating an innovative virtual community into the internal R&D process, companies face two major challenges understanding the ideas and then evaluating the best ideas. This study suggests that enterprises should give users quick validation and feedback on their ideas to signal that their ideas have potential value and the enterprise is interested in continued participation and that the enterprise understands their idea. The evaluation and feedback processes promote communication and interaction between the enterprise experts and users in the community, which helps users not only modify their original ideas but also gain valuable product information and expertise from the enterprise experts, thereby enhancing the quality of users’ ideas. As representatives, enterprise experts organize various types of activities such as idea summary reports, product development progress reports and new feature surveys. Enterprise experts clearly demonstrate the process of innovation and R&D activities to users, which strengthens the dissemination of information between enterprises and users and promotes the communication among all participants, thus maintaining the sustainable development of the innovative virtual community (Di Gangi et al.,2010). Andersen et al. (2013) proposed that to create a shared identity and perspective, enterprise experts try to maximize communication among participants and coordinate the relationship between the enterprise and the users, as well as among the users themselves, to encourage continued engagement and contribution of ideas. During this phase, users derive many beneﬁts from the various innovation activities, such as experience and enhanced skills, enjoyment and personal fulﬁllment, remuneration and, ultimately, products and services which cater better to their needs. These beneﬁts are the key motivators for their continuous participation (Di Gangi et al., 2010). 3.2.4 In the fourth phase, enterprises gain long-term beneﬁts. COI is a cyclic process in which enterprises continuously deﬁne and release innovation tasks, then users submit ideas, and enterprises ultimately integrate these high-quality ideas through a screening and evaluation process. In the process of ideas generation, enterprises may obtain many long- Crowdsource- term beneﬁts in addition to the ideas submitted by users. Djelassi and Decoopman (2013) based open suggested that the idea collection process is a potential publicity exercise for companies and innovation their new products or services, which increases brand awareness, shapes the corporate image, increases sales and helps enterprises and users establish a close and mutually beneﬁcial relationship. These long-term beneﬁts may take time to be realized but can also be extremely valuable. 3.3 Interaction forms between key participants As discussed in Section 3.1, the user and the enterprise expert are the two key participants in COI innovation tasks. Based on the discussion of the idea generation’s value co-creation mechanism in Section 3.2, the key participants interact frequently, i.e. users and enterprise experts and users and fellow users. This thesis considers that the interactions between users and enterprise experts can be divided into either one-way feedback or two-way feedback according to the direction and depth of the interactions, as shown in Figure 2. One-way feedback refers to enterprise experts or fellow users rating or commenting on other users’ ideas. Users submit their ideas and the response and feedback from their fellow users (Phase 2) and enterprise experts (Phase 3) are great motivators for users, and in the process, they can continuously learn relevant knowledge and enhance the quality of their follow-up ideas. Huang et al. (2011) focused on the impact of enterprise feedback on idea generation performance. For example, increasing the amount and speed of enterprise feedback can signiﬁcantly increase the total number of ideas. If an enterprise cannot differentiate between the quality of ideas and the level of users’ abilities, the overall value of the ideas will be signiﬁcantly reduced. Two-way interaction occurs when users have two-way discussions on ideas with enterprise experts or Enterprise Feedback Submission Users Ideas Feedback Fellow users Enterprise Interaction Submission Users Ideas Interaction Figure 2. Feedback and interactions between Interaction users and enterprise Fellow users experts fellow users via comments. Two-way discussions, among users or between users and the IJCS enterprise, can be initiated continuously, which may affect the quality of users’ follow-up 2,1 ideas. In particular, Di Gangi et al. (2010) emphasized the importance of enterprise experts in the innovation community is to encourage communication between users and the organization, which facilitate knowledge exchange, and to ensure ideas are properly evaluated and adopted. 3.4 Open innovation through integrating enterprises’ internal and external resources 3.4.1 Enterprises obtain external resources: Idea collection. Ideas are creative opinions or solutions users provide for enterprises’ innovation tasks. Idea collection is completed by enterprise experts who screen, validate and aggregate users’ submitted ideas. As shown in Figure 1, idea collection is the ﬁnal step of the cycle of idea generation and the key competitive resources that enterprises obtain from the innovation community. The external ideas that are collected are integrated into the internal R&D process. Idea collection is at the core of COI, opening the traditional boundaries of enterprises, connecting the internal and external resources of enterprises and realizing the open innovation of new products. 3.4.2 Enterprises use external resources: open product development. The basis of enterprises’ open innovation to crowdsource users’ ideas and then integrate these external ideas into the internal R&D process. Dong and Wu (2015) argued that simply collecting ideas is worthless and the key to value co-creation is how enterprises put the ideas into practice. Through theoretical analysis, this study illustrates that the success of a virtual innovation community relies on the enterprise’s ability to collect quality ideas, as well as the ability to effectively put these ideas into practice. Studies of the Dell’s IdeaStorms Forum and Starbucks’ Idea Platform demonstrate that a positive correlation exists between an enterprise’s ability to effectively implement community generated ideas and an enterprise’s commercial value. Andersen et al. (2013) argued that enterprises should promote the generation of external ideas and then integrate those ideas into the internal R&D process to ensure that new products and services are better suited to users’ needs. The traditional closed-end product development process regards the user as a passive recipient of products or services (Walter et al.,2001; Witell et al.,2011; Zhang et al., 2011), while open product development considers the user as a value co-creator and designs products in a user-oriented manner. Therefore, enterprises use external resources, namely, user generated ideas, to carry out open innovation in product development. 4. Discussions 4.1 Conclusions COI is the process in which enterprises crowdsource users to participate in open innovation tasks on Web 2.0 platforms to realize value co-creation between users’ ideas and internal resources. The users and the enterprise expert are the two key participants in COI’s value co- creation mechanism. In speciﬁc analysis, enterprises ﬁrst choose the form of crowdsourcing and deﬁne task requirements, then, through crowdsourcing platforms, call on users to participate in product innovation tasks. Next, users respond to enterprises’ invitation to participate in the tasks by generating and submitting their own ideas, while simultaneously browsing and then voting, rating and commenting on their fellow users’ ideas; at this stage, users contribute their technologies, abilities and ideas. Then, enterprise experts scrutinize and give feedback on users’ ideas to identify high-quality ideas, and at the same time, organize activities and coordinate relationships among users and the enterprise to stimulate communication. During this stage, users get the beneﬁt of enhancing their skills through practical and cooperative task, enjoyment, personal fulﬁllment, possible remuneration and so on, and ultimately, users will gain access to products and services which better cater to Crowdsource- their needs. In the long term, crowdsourcing innovation tasks can also produce publicity for based open the enterprise, raising brand awareness, increasing sales and improving customer innovation relationships. There are two kinds of interaction between users and enterprise experts: one- way feedback and two-way interaction. The continuous interaction and feedback between the participants generates high quality users’ ideas, which can be applied to internal R&D to realize open innovation of new product development. 4.2 Suggestions for future studies In the future, studies can be conducted from the perspective of value co-creation. This thesis has presented the theoretical framework, as shown in Figure 3. It is recommended that future studies focus on users’ contribution of ideas, including the number of ideas submitted, frequency of submissions and quality of ideas, to produce a comprehensive analysis of users’ contribution. Future studies may adopt either a subjective or objective assessment to validate the quantity, frequency and quality of ideas. Taking the quality of ideas as an example, it can be measured with objective data, such as whether it is adopted by the enterprise; ideas that are adopted can be interpreted as being of higher quality and vice versa for ideas that are not adopted. At the same time, subjective assessment data can be used to measure the quality of ideas. For example, experts may evaluate the novelty and practicability of ideas; highly novel and practical ideas are of high quality and vice versa. It is also suggested that future studies explore the contribution of users’ ideas from the perspectives of users’ features, characteristics of ideas and interactions. Users generate ideas so their task experience, knowledge and community identity affect the quantity, frequency and quality of their ideas. Ideas’ popularity, presentation features and content characteristics directly affect the quality of users’ ideas. Continuous feedback and interactions among enterprise experts and users trigger information sharing, which increases the quantity, frequency and quality of users’ ideas. Future studies can build a theoretical model in the context of COI and carry out empirical analysis. It is recommended that future studies explore the inﬂuence of users’ basic needs, intrinsic motivation and emotional factors on ideas they contribute. Studying the users’ individual Users’ features t1 Users’ task experience Users’ knowledge Psychological Users’ contribution Application of ideas Characteristics of ideas t4 t2 t3 Application of Users’ basic needs Quantity of ideas Ideas’ popularity ideas to internal Users’ intrinsic Frequency of ideas Ideas’ presentation product R&D Interaction Figure 3. Feedback/interaction Theoretical between enterprises and framework for future studies users needs (personal development, autonomy and relationships) and intrinsic motivations will IJCS not only help researchers and practitioners better understand of users’ psychological 2,1 mechanisms but also help explain the mediating effect of feedback and interaction patterns among participants on users’ contributions. In addition, future studies can probe into the impact of emotional effects, such as users’ community identity and attachment, on the quantity, frequency and quality of their ideas contributed. It is suggested that future studies focus on how ideas are applied to the internal R&D process. Enterprises’ collection of high-quality ideas is only the ﬁrst step in product innovation, the key is the successful application of the ideas in the product development process. Future studies can also explore the integration of external users’ ideas and internal research resources, which helps to effectively guide the practice of enterprise management. 4.2.1 In the second phase, users submit and evaluate ideas. After the enterprise releases the innovation tasks, users continuously submit ideas. At the same time, the user browses ideas submitted by fellow users and engage in interactive activities such as voting, rating and commenting. In this phase, enterprises gain resources, such as technologies, abilities and ideas, from users to support product innovation research and development projects (Djelassi and Decoopman, 2013). Users conceptualize and elaborate on ideas in a variety of ways. Di Gangi et al. (2010) suggested that enterprises should pay close attention to the ideas of lead users, as their intimate, ﬁrst-hand knowledge allows them imagine creative ways to improve existing technologies and methods. Schlagwein and Andersen (2014) presented LEGO users’ toy ideas which were submitted to the LEGO Cussoo platform in words, illustrations, pictures and more. Enterprises get unique non-professional users’ ideas which add to the traditional internal organizational learning. In the generation of ideas, users can simultaneously produce their own ideas while browsing others within the community and then vote for, rate and comment on them. The interaction among users not only promotes constant modiﬁcation of ideas but also encourages the exchange of opinions and expertise (Di Gangi et al.,2010), thereby greatly improving the quality of the ideas. Di Gangi et al. (2010) suggested that enterprises strongly promote the self-governance and continuous interaction among users as it is these users who will help the enterprise identify the most promising ideas among the large number submitted by the community. 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Zheng, H., Xie, Z., Hou, W. and Li, D. (2014), “Antecedents of solution quality in crowdsourcing: the sponsor’s perspective”, Journal of Electronic Commerce Research, Vol. 15 No. 3, pp. 212-224. Corresponding author Qian Liu can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org For instructions on how to order reprints of this article, please visit our website: www.emeraldgrouppublishing.com/licensing/reprints.htm Or contact us for further details: email@example.com
International Journal of Crowd Science – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jul 10, 2018
Keywords: Value co-creation; Crowdsourcing-based open innovation; Users’ ideas
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