Course 2014-2015 a.y.



Department of Management and Technology

Course taught in English

Go to class group/s: 31
CLMG (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/06) - M (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/06) - IM (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/06) - MM (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/06) - AFC (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/06) - CLAPI (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/06) - CLEFIN-FINANCE (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/06) - CLELI (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/06) - ACME (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/06) - DES-ESS (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/06) - EMIT (6 credits - II sem. - OP  |  SECS-P/06)
Course Director:

Classes: 31 (II sem.)

Course Objectives

Innovation increasingly takes place through communities and platforms driven by crowds of developers and problem solvers. At the same time, their outputs and products of the crowd contexts have come to shape the daily life of many of the world’s inhabitants. In some of the most dynamic sectors of the modern economy, such as apps for smartphones, video games, media content, scientific and technical problems solving, companies’ overall performance already rely on individuals located outside the organization to become crucial sources of modules, ideas, tasks and procedures. In their attempts to access and leverage these sources of innovation it is now quite common for companies to employ more open forms of innovation, and try to orchestrate innovative communities. While these open approaches have rapidly diffused, creating a wealth of opportunities, it is obviously crucial how companies manage to access and leverage these distributed sources of innovation. From this point of departure, the course develops the conceptual foundations, frameworks and methods for analyzing the relationships between communities and firms. The focus is on firm responses to outside communities’ development activities, inside community processes and dynamics, how to access and leverage innovation communities, how to manage and strategize in this context, and how to foster communities as well as create related fitting business models.

In addition, the course allows students to:

  • demonstrate an understanding of the rhetorical context of the current debates around these phenomena.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of relevant theories by explaining their assumptions, causal dynamics and processes.
  • Understand and analyze the determinants and the processes of community innovation and specify success and failure factors.
  • Discuss ethical issues, complexities and hurdles surrounding these models and devise strategic action plans to overcome them.
  • Use case method to apply insights to assess real business challenges.
  • Develop understanding of working with crowds and communities through hands-on exercises related to real business issues.

Course Content Summary

Part I:
  • open and distributed innovation.
  • Management of innovation as it relates to communities and crowds.
  • Sources of innovation.
  • The rise of the digital economy.

Part II:

  • community-focused strategies.
  • Competitive advantage and community engagements.
  • Strategy constraints for community-focused strategies.
  • Growth strategies for community-focused strategies.

Part III:

  • from customer empowerment to customer engagement.
  • The role of social media in enhancing distributed innovation.
  • The psychological effects of engagement strategies on consumers' product demand.

The course deals with these topics through lectures, hands-on exercises, cases, real-world problem solving and strategizing with companies.

Detailed Description of Assessment Methods

For attending students

Grading of attending students is based on the participation in class, quality of output on assignments and a final written exam.

For non attending students

Written exam only.


A selection of relevant research articles, readings and business cases is made available to the students at the beginning of the course.
Exam textbooks & Online Articles (check availability at the Library)
Last change 20/06/2014 11:12