Department of Management

Idea Selection in Web-Enabled Ideation Systems

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DOI

Organizations increasingly implement web-enabled ideation systems to involve the diverse crowd of distributed employees in ideation. While recent studies have started to investigate which types of data generated in these systems can support managers in their selection decisions, less attention has been placed on the crowd of contributors and the idea itself. Building on team diversity and information processing literatures, this study extends current research by examining how contributors' knowledge diversity, the framing of their feedback (positive and negative), and the degree of idea elaboration influence selection decisions in web-enabled ideation systems. Understanding the role of contributors is arguably important considering that the increasing integration of community functionalities enables employees to participate not only by generating ideas, but also by offering different types of knowledge and feedback to others' ideas, thus giving rise to new forms of online participation. At the same time, individuals' abilities and efforts invested in the formulation of ideas are claimed to influence how managers evaluate them, an aspect that has received limited attention in these online settings. This study is based on a rich and extensive data set of 726 ideas and 2925 comments submitted by employees to an online ideation platform of a large European firm over the course of 16 months. The findings reveal that different forms of contributors' diversity and the framing of their feedback have differential effects on idea selection. Ideas attracting contributors from different functional domains are more likely to be selected by managers, while geographic diversity does not have a significant effect on selection. Moreover, feedback that is negatively framed tends to decrease the selection chances of an idea. Finally, ideas with an optimal degree of elaboration are more likely to be selected by managers for funding. Implications for both innovation management research and practitioners are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Product Innovation Management
Volume36
Issue1
Pages (from-to)5-23
Number of pages19
ISSN0737-6782
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

    Research areas

  • CREATIVITY, DIVERSITY, INNOVATION COMMUNITIES, KNOWLEDGE, MANAGEMENT TEAMS, PERFORMANCE, PERSPECTIVE, PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT, SOCIAL NETWORKS, WORK

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