Does collaboration among participants lead to better ideas in IT-based idea competitions? An empirical investigation

Ivo Blohm, Ulrich Bretschneider, Jan Leimeister Marco, Helmut Krcmar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

91 Scopus citations


Open innovation research shows that idea competitions are a promising approach for integrating customers and that most innovations are a result of intensive collaboration (Franke and Shah, 2003; Gasco-Hernandez and Torres-Coronas, 2004; Nemiro, 2001; Sawhney et al., 2005). Thus, fostering collaboration among idea contributors might be a fruitful approach for unleashing the customers' entire creative potential and making idea competitions even more successful. This paper reports on a field study in which idea contributors could collaborate in an IT-based idea competition using the wiki technology. We tested whether user collaboration positively influences the quality of the submissions applying an in-depth analysis of idea quality. Our results show that user collaboration enhances idea quality and that inducing user collaboration is a viable design element for making idea competitions more effective. This contributes to a more successful design, implementation and operation of idea competitions, as well as to better outcomes. The article concludes with a discussion of customer groups collaborating in idea competitions (extrinsically and intrinsically motivated customers).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)106-122
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Networking and Virtual Organisations
Issue number2
StatePublished - Sep 2011


  • Collaboration
  • Crowdsourcing
  • Idea competitions
  • New product development
  • Open innovation
  • R&D
  • Software development
  • Toolkits
  • User innovation


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