Innovations are adopted when users integrate them in meaningful ways into existing social practices. Histories of major technological innovations show that often the creative initiative of users and user communities becomes the determining factor in the evolution of particular innovations. The evolutionary routes of the telephone, the Internet, the World Wide Web, email, and the Linux operating system all took their developers by surprise. Articulation of these
technologies as meaningful products and systems was made possible by innovative users and unintended resources.
Iterative and interactive models have replaced the traditional linear model of innovation during the last decade. Yet, heroic innovators and entrepreneurs, unambiguous functionality of products, and a focus on the up-stream aspects of innovation still underlie much discussion on innovation, intellectual property rights, technology policy, and product development. Coherent conceptual, theoretical and practical conclusions from research on knowledge creation, theory of learning, history of
technology, and the social basis of innovative change have rarely been made.
This book argues that innovation is about creating meaning; that it is inherently social; and is grounded in existing social practices. To understand the social basis of innovation and technology development we have to move beyond the traditional product-centric view on innovations. Integrating concepts from several disciplinary perspectives and detailed analyses of the evolution of Internet-related innovations, including packet-switched computer networks, World Wide Web, and the Linux open
source operating system, the book develops foundations for a new theoretical and practical understanding of innovation. For example, it shows that innovative development can occur in two qualitatively different ways, one based on evolving specialization and the other based on recombination of existing
socially produced resources. The expanding communication and collaboration networks have increased the importance of the recombinatory mode making mobility of resources, sociotechnical translation mechanisms, and meaning creation in communities of practice increasingly important for innovation research and product development.
`Review from previous edition Surprisingly rewarding ... Food for thought for anyone who has to create new ideas for a living.'
`Tuomi's Networks of Innovation provides a fresh and extremely insightful analysis of how disruptive innovation actually happens, why innovation is so unpredictable and how is it intimately linked to the change of social practices. In addition he provides a brillant analysis of the innovative processes underlying the creation of both the internet and Linux sidestepping the ideology of open source while providing a highly nuanced reading of its context.
This beautifully written book is a must read for any student of innovation.'
John Seely Brown, Director Emeritus, Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (PARC); co-author The Social Life of Information
`This book blends a sophisticated theory of innovation with in-depth knowledge of some of the key inventions of the Internet era, including the world wide web, and open source software. It is an essential contribution to the understanding of the Information Technology revolution as a cultural, social, and organizational process.'
Manuel Castells, Professor of Sociology, University of California at Berkeley
`Networks of Innovation illustrates and illuminates the history, the current situation, and the future of the Internet. The book advances theories of innovation and knowledge creation, and explores important problems and possibilities in an era when information and knowledge can be easily transferred via virtual communication.'
Ikujiro Nonaka, Professor, International Corporate Strategy, Hitotsubashi University
`Tuomi's excellent work analyses the complex relationships between innovative change and the construction of meaning. If you are interested in the wider societal and economic implications of the Internet, you should read this book!'
Georg von Krogh, Professor of Management, University of St. Gallen, Switzerland
2: Innovation as Multifocal Development of Social Practice
3: Inventing the Web
4: Making of the Internet
5: Analysis of the Early Phase of Internet Development
6: Socio-cognitive Spaces of Innovation and Meaning Creation
7: Breaking through a Technological Frame
8: Combination and Specialization in the Evolution of the Internet
9: Retrospection and Attribution in the History of Arpanet and Internet
10: Learning from Linux
11: Concluding Remarks
Number Of Pages: 264
Published: 1st March 2006
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.24
Weight (kg): 0.41