Open Innovation – The New Knowledge Economy

"Open innovation is about involving far more actors in the innovation process, from researchers, to entrepreneurs, to users, to governments and civil society. We need open innovation to capitalize on the results of European research and innovation. This means creating the right ecosystems, increasing investment, and bringing more companies and regions into the knowledge economy."

Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation

The Paradigm Shift in S-T-I Policy

There has been an important shift in the way we think about innovation from just a few decades ago. In the 1950s, we were science-centric and our focus was mainly on research and development. Later, in the 1970s we became technology-centric and focused on pushing technology and creating new markets. In 1990, we started shifting our mindset and became innovation-centric. We started focusing on transferring knowledge and building institutions. But after the economic crisis of 2008-09, we shifted our focus towards open innovation and knowledge creation.

Why Open Innovation?

Open Innovation means that the innovation processes are interactive. Innovation moves from the traditional and closed approach (in-house R&D teams) to a more open approach, where innovation is done in collaboration with third parties, using both internal and external ideas.

Through Open Innovation, organizations are able to boost their innovation culture. It is an innovation model that encourages the use of external resources so companies can co-create products and services that would not have been possible with in-house resources.  

The aim is to share capabilities, using a cooperation system which aims on a mutual strategic benefit, in mutually gaining access to the knowledge bases of involved organizations, ensuring individual knowledge bases are maintained and protected. The objective is to create a long-term relationship established in trust and cooperation.

What are the Benefits of Open Innovation?

  • Creating new products, processes and services.
  • Innovating, recycling and recreating old products, processes and services.
  • Reinforcing innovation within the company
  • Staying ahead of competitors
  • Reduction of innovation related resources
  • Time-to-market acceleration
  • Creation of new revenue streams
  • Risk Minimization
  • Expanding the company’s knowledge base and knowhow

What has changed? – Closed innovation to open innovation

Successful examples of Open Innovation:

High Tech Campus Eindhoven

  • Over 140 companies, startups and institutes.
  • 10,000 researchers, developers and entrepreneurs working on developing future technologies
  • The OI ecosystem offers Campus-based companies easy access to high tech facilities and international networks.
  • Campus companies (including Philips, NXP, IBM and Intel) decide what knowledge, skills and R&D they share
  • Fields of Health, Energy and Smart Environments.
  • Campus companies are responsible for nearly 40% of all Dutch patent applications.

Bouygues Construction

 "We are currently in the pre-industrialization phase of a one-of-a-kind photovoltaic panel project. We have just signed a three-year partnership with Bouygues Construction which will allow us to integrate our solution on pilot buildings very soon. Working with a partner like Bouygues Construction was crucial to the international success of our project.”

– Marc Ricci, CEO and Co-Founder of Crosslux

OI cases in European Construction Companies:

  • HOLCIM: Have created a 6 month programme for start-ups they partner with.
  • ACCIONA: Have created a pilot programme for technological start-ups.
  • SACYR: iChallenges programme to solve key business challenges through open innovation

Open Innovation in Project MEZEROE – An Open Innovation Test Bed

The MEZeroE open Innovation Test Bed (OITB) is a union of organizations offering access to know-how, facilities and resources required to support and accelerate the development, testing and market-entry of nZEB Enabler Envelope technology Solutions.

We provide Open Access, meaning that any interested organization – even out of Europe – can access our pilot lines and open innovation services. This means that any start-up or organization interested in developing new services, prototypes or products in the nZEB Envelope market can accelerate their go-to-market strategy by using our marketplace’s pilot lines and open innovation services.

Incurvo is the lead partner for exploitation in project MEZEROE. If you need assistance managing open innovation in a research project use the button below to get in touch.

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