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Innovation types can be classified according to actor and learning type. Individual learning in lecture halls, collaborative learning in teams within an institution, and networked learning outside the institute in domestic and international networks are the learning types for innovation pedagogy. They can all be used jointly to interconnect in a suitable situation. Crowd innovation is a new term, and it is based on the concept of crowdsourcing wherein innovations are obtained from an open innovation community. Such innovation has evolved from individual inventors to produce collaborative and networked innovations and finally crowd innovations. The crowd wisdom can be implemented in the web, which is the necessary technology for decentralized individuals to communicate on a single platform.


The Consortium on Applied Research and Professional Education (CARPE) is an example of innovation alliances (Kettunen, 2015). It includes the following institutions: 1) HU University of Applied Sciences GCBF ♦ Vol. 11 ♦ No. 1 ♦ 2016 ♦ ISSN 1941-9589 ONLINE & ISSN 2168-0612 USB Flash Drive 228 Global Conference on Business and Finance Proceedings ♦ Volume 11 ♦ Number 1 Utrecht (Hogeschool Utrecht), 2) Turku University of Applied Sciences (Turun ammattikorkeakoulu), 3) Polytechnic University of Valencia (Universitat Politècnica de València), 4) Hamburg University of Applied Sciences (Hochschule für Angewandte Wissenschaften Hamburg), and Manchester Metropolitan University. The Innopankki platform is an example of an innovation community in South Savo in Finland.

This platform is an interesting example, as ideas are collected from a wide crowd, including users and customers, to meet their needs and views of development. Educational institutions created this platform to search and evaluate ideas to create innovations. The research questions and theoretical concepts here in are connected with the empirical data by using qualitative research methodology as outlined by Bryman and Bell (2011) and Punch (2005). The study uses an interpretative approach to a case study (Yin, 2003). The study also enlightens the reader on the details of institutional management that are commonly omitted in quantitative studies (Mason, 2002).


The innovation alliance of higher education institutions is an open network. Other institutions and partners can join the research and development projects whenever deemed necessary. The strategic alliance is also open to student and staff exchanges from other institutions outside the strategic alliance. CARPE is an innovation alliance that provides opportunities for other active institutions to become associate members and finally become full members. The innovation process of the web-based innovation community involves three phases: 1) presenting an idea, 2) evaluating and improving the idea, and 3) implementing it. The idea is usually based on an existing problem that needs a solution. The idea is improved in the second stage by other users. It is also important to reject the idea if it cannot produce any benefits. The selected idea is then forwarded to the partners in the community for development and implementation in the final stage.


The traditional inventions of investors and the research of a single scholar have today extended to collaborative and networked innovation. This study presents a new innovation type called “crowd innovation” which is based on crowdsourcing. It is not reasonable to limit innovations to a specific type, but all types of innovations can be used in suitable situations. The study recommends that higher education institutions should create strategic innovation alliances to promote more research and development, support student and staff exchanges, and provide opportunities for institutions and other partners to collaborate.

This study also recommends that higher education institutions use crowdsourcing to encourage the greater public to present and evaluate new ideas for further development and innovation use.


Bryman, A. and E. Bell (2011) Business Research Methods. Oxford, Oxford University Press.

Burt, S.S. (2005) Brokerage and Closure: An Introduction to Social Capital. New York, NY, Oxford University Press.

Chesbrough, H. (2003). Open Innovation: The New Imperative for Creating and Profiting from Technology, Boston, MA, Harvard Business School Press.

Corso, M., A. Martini, E. Paolucci and L. Pellegrini (2001) “Knowledge Management in Product Innovation: An Interpretative Review,” International Journal of Management Reviews, vol. 3(2, June), p.


Faems, D., B. van Looy and K. Debackere (2005) “Interorganizational Collaboration and Innovation:

Toward a Portfolio Approach,” Journal of Product Innovation Management, vol. 22(3, May), p. 238-250.

GCBF ♦ Vol. 11 ♦ No. 1 ♦ 2016 ♦ ISSN 1941-9589 ONLINE & ISSN 2168-0612 USB Flash Drive 229 Global Conference on Business and Finance Proceedings ♦ Volume 11 ♦ Number 1 Gianiodis, P.T., S.C. Ellis and E. Secchi (2010) “Advancing a Typology of Open Innovation,” International Journal of Innovation Management, vol. 14(4, August), p. 531-572.

von Hippel, E. (2005) Democratizing Innovation. Cambridge, MA, The MIT Press.

Kantola, M. and J. Kettunen (2012) “Integration of Education with Research and Development and the Export of Higher Education,” On the Horizon, vol. 20(1), p. 7-16.

Kettunen, J. (2011) “Innovation Pedagogy for Universities of Applied Sciences,” Creative Education, 2(1, March), p. 56-62.

Kettunen, J. (2015) Strategic Networks of Higher Education Institutions: Evidence from Europe, Business

Education & Accreditation, vol. 7(1), p. 87-95. Retrieved September 24, 2015 from:

http://www.theibfr.com/ARCHIVE/BEA-V7N1-2015.pdf Kettunen, J., L. Kairisto-Mertanen and T. Penttilä (2013) Innovation Pedagogy and Desired Learning Outcomes in Higher Education, On the Horizon, vol. 21(4), p. 333-342.

Lichtenthaler, U. (2011) “Open Innovation: Past Research, Current Debates, and Future Directions,” Academy of Management Perspectives, vol. 25(1, February), p. 75-93.

Mason, J. (2002) Qualitative Researching. London, Sage Publications.

Perks, H. and R. Jeffery (2006) “Global Network Configuration for Innovation: A Study of International Fibre Innovation,” R&D Management, vol. 36(1), p. 67-83.

Pittaway, L., M. Robertson, K., Munir, D., Denyer and A. Neely (2004) “Networking and Innovation: A Systematic Review of the Evidence,” International Journal of Management Reviews, vol. 5/6(3-4, September), p. 137-168.

Punch, K., (2005) Introduction to Social Research: Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches, London, Sage Publications.

von Raesfeld, A., P. Geurts and M. Jansen (2012) “When Is a Network a Nexus for Innovation? A Study of Public Nanotechnology R&D Projects in the Netherlands,” Industrial Marketing Management, vol.

41(5, July), p. 752-758.

Reuer, J.J. and M.P. Koza (2000) “Asymmetric Information and Joint Venture Performance: Theory and Evidence for Domestic and International Joint Ventures,” Strategic Management Journal, vol. 21(1, January), p. 81-88.

Song, W., X. Ming and P. Wang (2013) “Collaborative Product Innovation Network: Status Review, Framework, and Technology Solutions,” Concurrent Engineering, 21(1, March), p. 55-64.

Yin, R. (2003) Case Study Research: Design and Methods. Thousand Oaks, CA, Sage Publications.

GCBF ♦ Vol. 11 ♦ No. 1 ♦ 2016 ♦ ISSN 1941-9589 ONLINE & ISSN 2168-0612 USB Flash Drive 230 Global Conference on Business and Finance Proceedings ♦ Volume 11 ♦ Number 1

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This study attempts to identify and generate empirical evidence about the characteristics and the strategies of innovation in the industry in Mexico The fist stage of the investigation is developed in a conceptual frame of technological and organizational innovation. A random simple of exporters enterprises located in Mexico was designed using the parameters of Probability. In this town surveys were applied to know the structural characteristics, technological behavior and competitive development (growth in sales, employment, exports, and public support) in the firm. The quantitative methods employed were discriminant analysis and logistic regression; both will classify the inquired firms in innovating and non-innovating. In other terms, a classifying model is developed in order to rank companies according to its innovative character, applying the two tools of multivariate analysis mentioned above. It will be proved that the concept of innovation is not valued by the firms; many firms with innovating behavior do not believe they perform activities of innovation. This is innovating-firms underestimate themselves. It is sustained that innovative firms stand out because they formalize their engineering or research and development activities, they make changes to the labor organization, and development activities. The research will explain how the particular relation between innovation and R&D activities is established. The main conclusion will be that the percentage of sales devoted to R&D activities as well as the purchase of machinery and equipment abroad are key factors to be considered an innovating firm.

KEYWORDS: Strategy Innovation, Small Firms

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Innovation and technology diffusion are considered the engine of economic growth; simultaneously these two factors allow acquiring competitive advantages to countries and enterprises [11] There is empirical evidence in macroeconomics that the differences on the innovating capability of the countries are reflected in the export performance. It is important to emphasize that innovation is a measure of international competitiveness in the actual globalized world.[13] Innovation in the firm is associated with a set of strategies, activities and attitudes that constitutes a higher performance that reflects in the growth rate, participation in foreign markets and generation of profits. [1] To achieve development among regions it would be important to make public policies focused on the generation of innovating firms and the creation of an environment convenient to develop this kind of firms. The characteristics that identify innovating firm are not self-evident because they derive from several domains, such as: diversification in products and markets, research and development activities (R&D), design engineering and the acquisition of machinery and equipment, creation of new products and processes, including commercial strategies too. The nature of innovation in a region that specializes in some economic activities is determined by structural factors like industrial concentration, the size of the local market and the cooperation between enterprises. Other important factors are institutional like: financials sources, entrepreneur spirit, scientific and technological infrastructure, systems of industrial protection and the level of education. [3] On economic literature innovation refers to the introduction of the new products, diffusion of the new methods of production, new markets, discovery of alternative sources of supply and changes in organization GCBF ♦ Vol. 11 ♦ No. 1 ♦ 2016 ♦ ISSN 1941-9589 ONLINE & ISSN 2168-0612 USB Flash Drive 231 Global Conference on Business and Finance Proceedings ♦ Volume 11 ♦ Number 1 or management. [12] In synthesis, innovation is a process constituted by different activities that result in a new product, expansion of a process, a new service in a specific market with local, national or international scope. There is not only one kind of innovating firm; so the definition must be open and including, it has to group all the specifics with a wide criteria. Therefore, a good approach is multivariant models. Empirical studies on innovating firms are based on surveys where definition of innovation is: a process that includes a set of scientific, technological, organizational, financial and commercial activities. These activities are supposed to create new products or improve them in technological terms; or use new technology or make an improvement in the production process. [10] As it can be inferred this definition rules out non-innovating firm but it does not look for significative differences among these two groups.

Research on innovating behavior favors the differences in the group of innovating firms considering structural, technological, strategic and competitive variables [2]. Other analysis finds the differences based on subjective qualifications or the intensity in the use of techno-productive factors. [6] In this research the definition of innovation, related to activities and resources within the firm and its ordinary operation, is tested. Consequently discrepancies between subjective judgments and facts will emerge. A variable that validates the innovating behavior was made considering activities in R&D and the acquisition of advanced machinery and equipment (software, robots, automatic production), the main evidence of these activities are patents and income for other services. [2] This research also include a question about the subjective appreciation of the entrepreneur: Do you think the firm makes activities of innovation? This is ambiguous because entrepreneurs do not perceive the technological sphere clearly when they evaluate a product;

furthermore entrepreneurs are tempted to confuse technology with fashion or aesthetics. In order to establish the difference between the definition of innovation and the one of entrepreneurs, considered accurate in this research, two models are proposed; these models allow evaluating which of them offer a better classification of the innovating behavior of the companies. Likewise other attributes that better describe the differences between innovating and non-innovating companies, are also reviewed, the purpose is trying to relate the characteristics, the activities and the results using the methodology proposals of industrial economics and

the economy of the company. Some of the variables considered in this study are the following ones:

The structural characteristics of the companies (size, sector, age) The technological behavior (expenditure in R&D, purchase of machinery and equipment, organizational change...) and The competitive performance (public aid, growth in sales, employment and exports).

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