How Disclosure Policies Impact Search in Open Innovation
Karim R. Lakhani, Lumry Family Associate Professor of Business Administration at the Harvard Business School
March 4, 2014 at 12:30pm ET
Berkman Center for Internet & Society, 23 Everett St, 2nd Floor
Most of society’s innovation systems–academic science, the patent system, open source, etc.–are “open” in the sense they are designed to facilitate knowledge disclosures amongst innovators. An essential difference across innovation systems, however, is whether disclosures take place only after final innovations are completed or whether disclosures relate to intermediate solutions and advances. Karim Lakhani will present experimental evidence showing that implementing intermediate versus final disclosures does not just create quantitative tradeoffs in shaping the rate of innovation. Rather, it qualitatively transforms the very nature of the innovation search process. Intermediate disclosures have the advantage of efficiently steering development towards improving existing solutions, but curtails experimentation and wider search. He will discuss comparative advantages of systems implementing intermediate versus final disclosures.
This talk is based on the paper "How Disclosure Policies Impact Search in Open Innovation."
Karim R. Lakhani is the Lumry Family Associate Professor of Business Administration at the Harvard Business School, a Faculty Associate at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society, and the Principal Investigator of the Harvard-NASA Tournament Lab at the Institute for Quantitative Social Science. He specializes in the management of technological innovation in firms and communities. His research is on distributed innovation systems and the movement of innovative activity to the edges of organizations and into communities. He has extensively studied the emergence of open source software communities and their unique innovation and product development strategies. He has also investigated how critical knowledge from outside of the organization can be accessed through innovation contests. Currently Professor Lakhani is investigating incentives and behavior in contests and the mechanisms behind scientific team formation through field experiments on the TopCoder platform and the Harvard Medical School.