Innovation and Virtual Environments: Towards Virtual Knowledge Brokers, Organization Studies
We examine the implications of virtual customer environments for supporting the innovation process. By building on the literature of knowledge brokers, we introduce the concept of virtual knowledge brokers - actors who leverage the internet to support third parties' innovation activities. These actors enable firms to extend their reach in engaging with customers and they also allow firms to have a richer dialogue with customers because of their perceived neutrality. Consequently, virtual knowledge brokers help firms to complement the knowledge they can acquire through traditional physical and virtual channels for customer interaction. We highlight the capabilities and contributions of virtual knowledge brokers, and we discuss the implications of these entities for theory and practice in the management of innovation.
Gianmario Verona, Emanuela Prandelli, Mohanbir Sawhney
Verona, Gianmario, Emanuela Prandelli, and Mohanbir Sawhney. 2006. Innovation and Virtual Environments: Towards Virtual Knowledge Brokers. Organization Studies. 27(6): 765-788.