Building and sustaining innovation ecosystems: A research on new ventures' strategies and capabilities

Jin Han

Research output: ThesisPhD Thesis - Research UT, graduation UT

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Many new ventures show the ambition to build and sustain innovation ecosystems by aligning with various value complementors, unfortunately, they suffer a high rate of innovation ecosystem mortality. Existing innovation ecosystem literature offers incomplete understandings of how new ventures as focal actors can exploit capabilities and implement strategies to build and sustain a viable innovation ecosystem. Relying on the context of mainland China, one literature review and three empirical studies are designed to provide more insights. First, new focal ventures should have a deeper understanding of the innovation ecosystems’ aggregated conceptual boundaries. Second, they need to seek cross-sectional, as well as temporal, interactive effects among ecosystem-specific strategies, which promote ecosystem emergence and viability. Besides, they need to execute the LIE effectively through which new ventures could proactively design and implement ecosystem-level strategies. Third, they need a set of dynamic capabilities, i.e., metacognitive capability, networking capability, learning agility to acquire the high LIE performance, the foundation for a full-fledged innovation ecosystem. Finally, they should take advantage of two material-related, systemic local innovation supports in entrepreneurship ecosystem (EE) complement significantly two dynamic capabilities, thereby promoting the higher levels of LIE.
The findings revealed by this research contribute to the innovation ecosystem literature and the complexity management literature. First, this research shed new light on that the “bottom-up” evolutionary approach and top-down” design thinking are two interrelated processes that co-exist distinctly at two levels. Second, this research bridges the gap between the separate research focus on focal firms’ ecosystem-related capabilities and ecosystem-specific strategies. Third, LIE suggests that the spatial context is relevant to early-stage innovation ecosystems. Fourth, the structural and time-based ecosystem dynamics are added to the current ecosystem literature. Finally, this research extends the complexity management literature to the ecosystem level.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • University of Twente
  • de Weerd-Nederhof, Petra, Supervisor
  • Löwik , S.J.A., Co-Supervisor
  • Shah - Zhou, Haibo, Supervisor
Award date9 Sep 2021
Place of PublicationEnschede
Print ISBNs978-90-365-5221-9
Publication statusPublished - 9 Sep 2021


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