Joint Product Development and Inter-firm Innovation
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This thesis examines the strategic drivers and processes governing the development of products and/or technologies by multiple economic entities. The thesis adopts an operational approach in addressing the question and examines the how of joint product development. For this purpose, the different mechanisms that enable joint product development licensing, outsourced development, and codevelopment are considered, and the focus is restricted to the analysis and characterization of the optimal management of joint product development mechanisms. Regarding the mechanism of licensing, the thesis examines both its dynamic inter-temporal implications (i.e., how licenses should be structured given that licensing will also occur in the future) as well as the role of the technology in question (i.e., how are licenses affected by the type of technology being licensed). Along the first dimension, the thesis finds that license fees (and the negotiation with potential licensees) may be structured so as to induce a controlled diffusion depending on the technology roadmap the provider firm has laid out for the future. On the second dimension, the study finds that when the technological solution being licensed requires minimal integration from the licensees side, it may be beneficial to restrict attention to a few potential licensees instead of licensing to the entire market. On the codevelopment side, the thesis presents an original case study that uncovers some of the salient features present in many joint development efforts. Subsequently, a mathematical model is proposed that captures the key dimensions of the phenomenon that were identified through the case study. Analysis of the normative model reveals the key role of market and development uncertainty in structuring the formal contractual agreements and sharing the value created through the codevelopment effort.