Amplifying User and Producer Innovation The Power of Participation Motives

Christina Raasch, Eric von Hippel

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The motivation to innovate is traditionally assumed to be associated with use or sale of the innovation created-the output. In this chapter we explore benefits from participation in the innovation process, such as enjoyment and learning, as an additional motivator. Using data from national representative surveys in the United Kingdom, United States, and Japan, we document that a significant portion of household sector innovation is today motivated by participation benefits rather than output benefits. We show via a formal model that purposeful and skilled harnessing of participation motives can greatly amplify the range of viable innovations for users and producers. We explain that those who find adequate reward from participation benefits only-pure 'participators'-can be recruited to amplify the total amount of paid and unpaid R&D and innovation carried out by users and producers within the household, business, and government sectors. We discuss important implications for the theory and practice of R&D and innovation. Acknowledgements: We are always grateful to the members of our Open and User Innovation community. We work closely together, and share the joy of mutually teaching and learning. Specific to this paper, we wish to thank Joana Mendonca, Pedro Oliveira, Jeroen de Jong, Susumu Ogawa, and Kritinee Pongtanalert for sharing their survey data and thinking with us. We also want to thank Carliss Baldwin, Dietmar Harhoff and Tim Schweisfurth for sharing their ideas with us on this topic, and critically reading our paper.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOpen Source Innovation
Subtitle of host publicationThe Phenomenon, Participant's Behaviour, Business Implications
PublisherTaylor and Francis Inc.
Number of pages26
ISBN (Electronic)9781317624240
ISBN (Print)9781138802025
StatePublished - 11 Feb 2015


  • Gamification
  • Innovation efficiency
  • Innovation process participation benefits


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