An ontological approach to design and operate innovation networks
This work presents an ontological approach, representing the main entities and their interrelationships building the concept of innovation networks. In this sense, an ontological approach constitutes an ``explicit specification of a conceptualization'' based on what exists in a specific domain. Aligned with the recommendations of scholars studying the epistemology of ontologies the following sub-questions have been addressed: (1) how until now innovation networks have been approached by the academic community; (2) which elements are explaining innovation networks; (3) how the elements innovation networks are interrelated and; (4) which additional elements should be included to further advance the understanding of innovation networks. As a result of this research, it is proposed to leverage on the process of absorptive capacity to manage the performance of innovation networks. Finally, innovation networks established between 2007 and 2014 in Germany are analyzed and recommendations for policy makers and managers are discussed.
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