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Based on interviews with R&D managers and a survey amongst R&D employees, Verena Nedon shows that perceived social pressure has an immense impact on R&D employees working in OI-projects. Employees’ attitude (regardless of whether positive or negative) and perceived behavioral control play an important, but not dominant role. The study also implies that intrinsic motivators have a stronger effect on employees’ willingness to engage in knowledge exchange with external partners than extrinsic components. By targeting a set of relevant questions related to the human side of open innovation, the study significantly contributes to the micro-foundation of OI-research and sheds light on the hitherto neglected perspective of employees engaged in OI-projects. The findings are relevant for scholars, companies already following the OI-approach and OI-newcomers.

Inhaltsverzeichnis

Frontmatter

1. Introduction

Abstract
Companies increasingly face a level of complexity and multi-disciplinarity in their research and development (R&D) of products, which a single player is unable to cope with – especially if he wants to stay competitive (see Miotti and Sachwald 2003; Pfeffer and Salancik 2009). A company can address this issue by opening up its innovation process and integrating external partners and sources (e.g., customers, universities, suppliers) to accelerate its own innovation process and/or facilitate the external use of its innovations (see Chesbrough 2003; Chesbrough et al. 2006). This phenomenon is called open innovation (OI).
Verena Nedon

2. Conceptual Foundation

Abstract
This chapter outlines the underlying concepts of this study and research questions are framed, based on the identified research gap. The fundamental concept is the OI-approach. Therefore, the first sub-chapter provides information about antecedents and basic principles and gives an overview of prior and current research related to open innovation. Further, the link between open innovation and knowledge management is emphasized. As a result, OI-relevant aspects of knowledge management are discussed in the second sub-chapter. Finally, attention is drawn to the identified research gap and research questions for this study are compiled.
Verena Nedon

3. Theoretical Foundation

Abstract
This chapter focuses on introducing the theories consulted to derive hypotheses for the research model of this study and to answer the formulated research questions. The theory of planned behavior (TPB) – a frequently used theory with great predictive validity (see Armitage and Conner 2001) – builds the theoretical foundation of this study. Therefore, the first sub-chapter discusses the components of this theory and the underlying relationships. The second sub-chapter concentrates on publications where researchers have applied the TPB to examine individuals’ knowledge exchange behavior. This literature review mainly aims to identify motivational factors that have an impact on employees’ willingness to exchange knowledge in OI-projects. The identified motivational factors and their hypothesized influence on employees’ willingness are discussed in the last sub-chapter.
Verena Nedon

4. Research Design and Operationalization

Abstract
In this chapter, the underlying research approach and the different phases of the empirical part of this study are described. Due to the focus of my thesis (see chapter 1), it was necessary to align the research design to the context of knowledge exchange in OI-projects and to the aspired level of research – R&D employees with experience in OI-projects and collaboration with external partners. In the following sub-chapters, I explain the research approach and reasoning behind the company selection. Thereafter, details on the qualitative pre-study and the quantitative main study are provided.
Verena Nedon

5. Findings from Qualitative Pre-Study (Interviews)

Abstract
This chapter summarizes the findings from interviews conducted with R&D managers. The first sub-chapter provides insights into their understanding of open innovation. In the second sub-chapter, the typical procedure for setting up an OI-project is described. Thereafter, the focus lies on the search and selection by companies of an appropriate OI-partner. The fourth sub-chapter deals with the basic conditions for an OI-project. Finally, the advantages and challenges of open innovation are considered.
Verena Nedon

6. Findings from Quantitative Study (Online Survey)

Abstract
This chapter summarizes the findings from the online survey. The first sub-chapter gives some indications about data distribution and how biases were treated. It follows the description of the sample and some selected descriptive results. In the third sub-chapter, findings from an open-ended question regarding requirements for knowledge exchange in OI-projects are presented. Finally, I evaluate the measurement model and the structural model.
Verena Nedon

7. Discussion

Abstract
In this chapter, findings from the interviews and online survey (see chapter 5 and 6) are discussed along the lines of the three research questions outlined in chapter 2.3. The findings are compared with – and related to – prior research to form a holistic view of the research questions and to answer them. Furthermore, the follow-up group discussions and the literature are consulted to find an explanatory approach for those hypotheses that were not supported by the data. The first sub-chapter exposes R&D managers’ interpretations of open innovation and discusses aspects that are – from an R&D point of view – especially important for knowledge exchange in OI-projects (RQ1). The second sub-chapter reveals which factors determine the intention of R&D employees to exchange knowledge with external partners in OI-projects (RQ2). The third sub-chapter examines which motivational factors can positively influence R&D employees’ willingness to exchange their knowledge in OI-projects (RQ3).
Verena Nedon

8. Conclusions

Abstract
This chapter considers the findings of my study with regard to their contribution to academic research. Furthermore, managerial implications are derived and recommendations for managerial practice are formulated. Although I executed my research with great care and thoroughness, it is inevitably subject to some limitations, which are highlighted in the last sub-chapter together with recommendations for further research.
Verena Nedon

Backmatter

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