Open Innovation is an approach to innovation that seeks to access knowledge and resources from outside of the organization in order to find new solutions. This method allows companies or organizations to look beyond their own capabilities and tap into external sources of innovation, such as customers, suppliers, competitors, universities, research centers or other industries. Open Innovation encourages a culture of collaboration and co-creation between different parties who can bring different perspectives and expertise together. It also allows organizations to share risks and rewards with external partners while improving their overall competitive advantage.
Open Innovation is often seen as an alternative or complement to traditional internal R&D activities. While it enables organizations to access external ideas more quickly than they could through traditional R&D processes, it also requires them to be open-minded about sharing proprietary information with others in order for this process to be successful. Additionally, Open Innovation helps organizations become more agile by allowing them focus on core activities while outsourcing certain aspects of the product development cycle.
One example of Open Innovation at work is the case of HP’s “e-Ink” project which aimed at developing a new type of paper for printing documents using electronic ink technology. Rather than relying solely on its own internal teams for ideas, HP opened up the project by inviting engineers from various industries as well as universities around the world who could offer their insights into solving this challenge. As a result of this open collaboration, HP was able to come up with a solution that would not have been possible if it had relied only on its own employees’ knowledge base.
Another example is Lego’s partnership with NASA back in 2014 where Lego invited space enthusiasts around the world via online platforms such as YouTube and Facebook groups to submit designs for special edition space sets based on real NASA missions. By leveraging these online channels instead of relying only on its internal design team, Lego was able create unique sets that resonated strongly with fans while also boosting brand awareness among younger audiences who were more likely engage with Lego through these digital channels rather than through traditional media outlets like TV commercials or print ads.
Open innovation has become increasingly popular over recent years thanks largely due advances in technology which enable faster communication between collaborators regardless of location or timezone difference. In addition, several tools exist today that can facilitate open innovation processes such as virtual workspaces or project management software which help keep track of progress during collaborative projects without requiring physical meetings between members working remotely across different countries or continents .
Sourcing resources for innovation from outside the organization, and combining ideas sourced externally with those created internally, open innovation often allows for the development of more ideas for innovation, and more creative solutions to the problems facing the company. Open innovation can occur between companies, with only the company and outside experts, or it can be open to the public. NASA often undergoes open innovation, where they pose a question to the public regarding a problem they are facing in their innovation processes, and they hold a contest to get the best solutions.