Innovation Spaces for a Sustainable Survival - An exploratory multiple case study on the role of Innovation Spaces in shaping today’s dynamic environment
Abstract: Today, there is an urge to find long-term sustainable solutions. The increasing emphasis on creativity, innovation and collaboration as key sources of competitive advantage make the spaces in which these solutions are developed of key importance.The main research question of this thesis is to explore how Innovation Spaces contribute in shaping today’s dynamic environment. The goal is to understand what mind-set and interaction processes are present inside an Innovation Space, what implications they have for the society, and the role of technology and innovation inside these spaces. A secondary research question aims at investigating the impact of forced remote/smart working, increased due to the emergence of Covid-19, on innovative practices that took place inside Innovation Spaces built around physical proximity.The methodology for this study is an explorative qualitative approach applied to a multiple case study. The data was collected through two kinds of sources: semi-structured interviews to respondents of six Innovation Spaces and a narrative literature review. Subsequently, the analysis of the primary data collection of interviews followed an Aspect-Thematic Analysis.The key result of the analysis is the existence of three overlapping spheres of Innovation Spaces. These are Mind-set & Human Interaction, Impact on Society & Sustainability and Innovation & Technology. The first sphere of Mind-set & Human Interaction represents a point of intersection between the other two. Although each sphere is vital for the effectiveness of the space, the focus is on the people involved, their mind-set and the interactions that take place.The success of an innovation space in shaping today’s dynamic environment lies in the ability of who manages it to achieve the mind-set and interaction necessary to have an impact on society by leveraging effectively on innovation and technology.
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