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Incremental Vs. Radical Innovation As A Determinant Of Design Position

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"The paper analyzes the determinants behind the choice of contracting external designers when the companies have internal design teams. The methodology follows a multi-case study analysis of seven industrial firms (four plus three of the control group) that use design actively in their activity. The detailed analysis of these cases is done first by analyzing the companies and some of their projects, and second by identifying the determinants behind the decision of using external design. The results reveal that companies that contract external designers have one of two goals: a) have a ‘design breakthrough’ perspective – radical innovation; or b) benefit from the association with a recognized designer. In those cases the internal design team is used to do incremental innovations in the product platforms developed by the external designers."


PUBLISHED: Proceedings from the The 18th DMI: Academic Design Management Conference, 2012


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