Experimentations in emerging innovation ecosystems: Specificities and roles. The case of the hydrogen energy fuel cell


International Journal of Technology Management

2017, vol. 75, n°1-4, pp.28-54

Départements : Information Systems and Operations Management, GREGHEC (CNRS)

Mots clés : systemic innovation; innovation ecosystem; experimentation; prototyping; ecosystem emergence; complete solution experiment; CSE; fuel cell; hydrogen energy

Little research has focused on the way an innovation ecosystem emerges and specifically what processes and tools support it. We argue that as in innovation development processes, experimentation may generate knowledge and reduce the uncertainties associated with this emergence. Based on a longitudinal study of hydrogen energy solutions that require a novel ecosystem, we outline four specificities of the experiments performed, designated as complete solution experiments, and their role in this emergence. They: 1) involve all the players required so as to deliver and operate a complete solution; 2) target real customers using the innovation in real conditions over a significant period of time; 3) are highly refined (components and complements are representative of an industrial offer); 4) are transparent on how the data generated will be exploited and shared with all the players who commit to the experiment, who are thus assured that they will acquire validated information