Valuing Value in Innovation Ecosystems: How Cross-Sector Actors Overcome Tensions in Collaborative Sustainable Business Model Development

Inge Oskam, Bart Bossink, Ard-Pieter de Man

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5 Citations (Scopus)
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This article aims to uncover the processes of developing sustainable business models in innovation ecosystems. Innovation ecosystems with sustainability goals often consist of cross-sector partners and need to manage three tensions: the tension of value creation versus value capture, the tension of mutual value versus individual value, and the tension of gaining value versus losing value. The fact that these tensions affect all actors differently makes the process of developing a sustainable business model challenging. Based on a study of four sustainably innovative cross-sector collaborations, we propose that innovation ecosystems that develop a sustainable business model engage in a process of valuing value in which they search for a result that satisfies all actors. We find two different patterns of valuing value: collective orchestration and continuous search. We describe these patterns and the conditions that give rise to them. The identification of the two patterns opens up a research agenda that can shed further light on the conditions that need to be in place in order for an innovation ecosystem to develop effective sustainable business models. For practice, our findings show how cross-sector actors in innovation ecosystems may collaborate when developing a business model around emerging sustainability-oriented innovations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1059-1091
JournalBusiness & Society
Issue number5
Early online date20 Feb 2020
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2021

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