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Article
Publication date: 16 April 2020

Sucet Jimena Martínez-Vergara and Jaume Valls-Pasola

Disruptive innovation theory has attracted the interest of researchers and practitioners across many areas, resulting in the development of new business models and…

Abstract

Purpose

Disruptive innovation theory has attracted the interest of researchers and practitioners across many areas, resulting in the development of new business models and strategies. Despite the increasing scholarly attention, its definition has not yet been understood, the understanding of the term “disruptive” and the complex nature of this innovation has provoked some misinterpretations, and the meaning remains ambiguous. To address this confusion, this article undertakes a critical review of disruptive innovation in an attempt at providing a solid theoretical grounding.

Design/methodology/approach

The review examines the key issues of published articles, identified after conducting a search in the Web of Science scholarly database. The analysis highlights the basic definitions of disruptive innovation, showing its evolution, types and its characteristics. This article also examines the behaviours adopted by the actors associated with disruptive innovation (i.e. incumbents, entrants and customers).

Findings

Overall, this article finds that disruptive innovation has its own elements to be identified, requiring an in-depth analysis to avoid confusing with other innovation approaches. The findings suggest that disruptive innovation affects businesses and sectors in varied and complex ways because customers from low-end market and mainstream market appreciate this innovation. Further, its impact on practice is huge and incites further efforts in establishing a stronger theoretical grounding.

Originality/value

Our research contributes on the evolution of this theory, helping to better understand the phenomenon of disruption and can be used for different types of research settings.

Details

European Journal of Innovation Management, vol. 24 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1460-1060

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Article
Publication date: 24 March 2020

Wan Liu, Ren-huai Liu, Hui Chen and Jet Mboga

Disruptive technology and innovation represent complex conflicts in nature. This paper aims to present an analytical review of the heterogeneity and conflicts that exist…

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1053

Abstract

Purpose

Disruptive technology and innovation represent complex conflicts in nature. This paper aims to present an analytical review of the heterogeneity and conflicts that exist in the disruptive technology/innovation between the eastern and western countries using Chinese high-speed railways to illustrate disruptive innovation.

Design/methodology/approach

The emerging economy brings about other theoretical and practical conflicts. Qualitative analysis is conducted on Chinese high-speed railways to assess the validity of innovation characteristics using Professor Clayton M. Christensen’s theories of disruptive technology/innovation and conflict. The authors explore the conflicts that can accompany the introduction of disruptive technologies in the current platform and how appropriately this specific context can lessen these conflicts.

Findings

The study revealed that Christensen’s theories could be applied 100per cent to the Chinese context if the western disruptive innovation theory can meet the practical requirements of Chinese disruptive technology/innovation. Qualitative analysis showed that Chinese high-speed railways had experienced greater success with disruptive innovation mechanism. The authors conclude that while the Chinese market is critical in shaping the kind of innovations that are emerging there, many disruptive technologies/innovations in China have their roots in the low-end market and new market. Implications for theory and practice are discussed.

Originality/value

There exists a research gap in the literature on the Chinese context. Conflict of disruptive technology and innovation within China and the characteristics of the Chinese high-speed railway prompt further research for scholars and practitioners.

Details

International Journal of Conflict Management, vol. 31 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1044-4068

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 20 November 2020

Jasmin Mikl, David M. Herold, Kamila Pilch, Marek Ćwiklicki and Sebastian Kummer

Disruptive technologies in the global logistics industry are often regarded as a threat to the existing business models of incumbents’ companies. Existing research…

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2361

Abstract

Purpose

Disruptive technologies in the global logistics industry are often regarded as a threat to the existing business models of incumbents’ companies. Existing research, however, focuses mainly on whether technologies have disruptive potential, thereby neglecting when such disruptive transitions occur. To understand the timing of potential disruptive technological change, this paper aims to investigate the elements of the underlying ecosystem shaping these transitions.

Design/methodology/approach

Building on the established ecosystem framework from Adner and Kapoor (2016a), this paper constructs four categories of technology substitution to assess how quickly disruptive change may occur in the global logistics industry and defines key technology substitution determinants in logistics to emphasize the role of ecosystems for further consideration into disruptive innovation theory.

Findings

Based on the key determinants, this paper proposes first definitions of distinctive ecosystems elements linked to the three types of innovations, namely, sustaining innovations, low-end disruptions and new-market disruptions, thereby integrating ecosystems into Christensen’s (1997) disruptive innovation theory.

Originality/value

By developing a framework that conceptualizes the pace of technology substitution, this paper contributes to a more nuanced understanding of how logistics managers and academics can better predict disruptive transitions and develop strategies to allocate resources.

Details

Review of International Business and Strategy, vol. 31 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2059-6014

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 2 July 2018

Faisal Rasool, Pisut Koomsap, Bilal Afsar and Babrak Ali Panezai

Disruptive innovations have the potential to fundamentally change how businesses operate. This study aims to propose a five-step framework to help firms develop disruptive

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4115

Abstract

Purpose

Disruptive innovations have the potential to fundamentally change how businesses operate. This study aims to propose a five-step framework to help firms develop disruptive innovations and to offer a scale for evaluating their disruptive potential. This scale can also be applied to identify the disruptive potential of innovations introduced to the market by competitors.

Design/methodology/approach

The framework was designed on the basis of criteria chosen to identify the disruptive potential of innovations at early stages of development based on a theoretical understanding of disruptive innovation, its challenges and holistic consideration of innovation as a dynamic process. It consists of steps that could serve as a reference model during the process of developing innovations with disruptive potential. A case study is discussed in detail to demonstrate the applicability of the framework.

Findings

A simple yet comprehensive assessment framework for disruptive innovation has been developed, which can help develop innovations with disruptive potential in existing settings of incumbent firm. A case study of the Wii demonstrates that Nintendo could have planned its disruptive product using the proposed framework.

Originality/value

Most research works in this area have focused on difficulties experienced by firms facing disruption and failed to highlight its opportunities; this study argues that firms can intentionally create disruptive innovations. The results of this study offer firms a tool that facilitates a proactive approach, helping develop new disruptive innovations and identify those from competitors.

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Article
Publication date: 16 August 2018

Nicolle Montgomery, Graham Squires and Iqbal Syed

The purpose of this paper is to review the literature on the Disruptive Innovation Theory and on the disruptive potential of real estate crowdfunding (RECF) in the real…

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2658

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to review the literature on the Disruptive Innovation Theory and on the disruptive potential of real estate crowdfunding (RECF) in the real estate finance industry, assessing whether RECF constitutes a potentially disruptive innovation to the real estate finance industry. Based on a review and synthesis of the literature, the paper advances an initial conceptual framework of core characteristics of disruptive innovations. This framework is used to examine the disruptive potential of RECF in the real estate finance industry.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper is a systematic literature review that synthesizes and analyzes relevant extant research articles retrieved from online databases.

Findings

Findings suggest that according to the theory of disruptive innovations, and the core characteristics of disruptive innovations, RECF is a potentially disruptive innovation to the real estate finance industry. RECF seems to generally align with the classic characteristics of disruptive innovations. A more comprehensive and systematic analysis, supported by empirical data, is necessary to evaluate whether and to what extent RECF constitutes a disruptive innovation to the real estate finance industry.

Research limitations/implications

This study has only captured and reviewed articles published and available in database searches. RECF is a nascent field that has recently begun receiving academic attention.

Practical implications

Real estate plays an integral part in the economy, and the way it is financed has become an increasingly important issue following the Global Financial Crisis. This paper provides useful insights for assessing whether and to what extent RECF may be disruptive to the real estate finance industry.

Social implications

RECF may potentially improve accessibility and affordability of real estate finance, thereby helping to address the problem of shortage of real estate project finance.

Originality/value

While RECF is portrayed in the academic and gray literature as a disruptive innovation, its disruptive potential is yet to be determined. This paper advances an initial conceptual framework of defining characteristics of disruptive innovations. This framework is used to evaluate RECF as a potentially disruptive innovation in the real estate project finance industry. This study forms a basis for future empirical examination of the disruptive potential of RECF in the real estate finance industry.

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Article
Publication date: 30 August 2011

C.C. Hang, Jin Chen and Dan Yu

This paper aims to present an assessment framework which captures the essential characteristics and holistic success factors for disruptive innovation based on the

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8303

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to present an assessment framework which captures the essential characteristics and holistic success factors for disruptive innovation based on the original theory of Christensen, a number of clarifications as reported in the literature and a study of known, successful cases in the literature.

Design/methodology/approach

The framework was designed based on the improved understanding of disruptive innovation challenges and on the holistic consideration of innovation as a dynamic process. It consists of structured questions which could be used to guide detailed data collection and analysis needed to answer the key questions which constitute the assessment framework. They are grouped under market positioning, technology and other favourable drivers.

Findings

A simple yet comprehensive assessment framework for disruptive innovation has been developed. Two of the known successful cases, namely the steel minimill of Nucor and the 3.5 inch disk drive of Conner/Seagate, were presented in more detail to illustrate the use of this systematic framework in assessing the success potential of these cases of disruptive innovations in either the low‐end or new markets. A third and fairly new example, that of the limited mobile phone system/product of UTStarcom, was then presented to illustrate a case where the framework revealed reasons for potential failure. A fourth example of Google's web‐based office applications then illustrated how the framework might be used to study the disruptive potential of a new product.

Originality/value

This paper enables a more accurate and systematic assessment of disruptive innovation. The framework also has the potential to be further developed into a systematic tool for answering the question of whether the disruptive innovation theory could indeed be used to provide ex ante prediction of the success of a new disruptive innovation.

Details

Foresight, vol. 13 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 3 April 2019

Tiantian Shang, Xiaoming Miao and Waheed Abdul

The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate visually the knowledge structure and evolution of disruptive innovation. The paper used CiteSpace III to analyze 1,570…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate visually the knowledge structure and evolution of disruptive innovation. The paper used CiteSpace III to analyze 1,570 disruptive innovation records from the Web of Science database between 1997 and 2016.

Design/methodology/approach

Initially, this paper offers a comprehensive overview of papers, countries, journals, scholars and application areas. Subsequently, a time zone view of high-frequency keywords is presented, emphasizing the course of evolution of the study hotspots. Finally, a visualization map of cited references and co-citation analysis are provided to detect the knowledge base at the forefront of disruptive innovation.

Findings

The findings are as follows: the number of papers shows exponential growth. The USA has the largest contribution and the strongest center. The Netherlands shows the largest burst, followed by Japan. Journal of Production Innovation Management and Research Policy is the most important journals. Hang CC has the largest number of articles. Walsh ST is identified as a high-yielding scholar. Christensen CM is the most authoritative scholar. Engineering electrical electronic is the most widely used research category, followed by management and business. The evolutionary course of the study hotspots is divided into five stages, namely, start, burst, aggregation, dispersion and not yet formed. Eight key streams in the literature are extracted to summarize the knowledge base at the forefront of disruptive innovation.

Originality/value

This paper explores the whole picture of disruptive innovation research and demonstrates a visual knowledge structure and the evolution of disruptive innovation. It provides an important reference for scholars to capture the current situation and influential trends in this field.

Details

International Journal of Innovation Science, vol. 11 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-2223

Keywords

Open Access
Article
Publication date: 16 February 2021

Arto Wallin, Matti Pihlajamaa and Nando Malmelin

The article explores what forms of disruption are prioritized by top executives of large manufacturing companies in Finland and what strategies they consider appropriate…

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1250

Abstract

Purpose

The article explores what forms of disruption are prioritized by top executives of large manufacturing companies in Finland and what strategies they consider appropriate for the management of disruptive threats and opportunities.

Design/methodology/approach

The empirical study was based on interviews with top executives in some of Finland's largest manufacturing companies.

Findings

Based on the data, we identify exploitative and explorative strategies in four dimensions that executives consider important in anticipating and responding to disruptions: internal development efforts, stance on new entrants, ecosystems and institutional change. Due to the presence of multiple potential disruptions, which often generate conflicting demands, executives have to consider them simultaneously and balance between them when making strategic decisions. They therefore do not necessarily have a specific response strategy, but their aim is to develop their companies' capabilities so that they are well-placed to face the future with confidence.

Originality/value

The findings indicate that the executives envision a disruption landscape that is more complex than typically described in the literature. In addition, it answers the call for a more systematic understanding of incumbents' response strategies by linking different disciplinary views with well-grounded empirical data.

Details

European Journal of Innovation Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1460-1060

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 11 January 2011

Darian Unger

The purpose of this paper is to use a series of disruptive innovations in the 150‐year history of the US lighting industry to test whether two key innovation management…

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2698

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to use a series of disruptive innovations in the 150‐year history of the US lighting industry to test whether two key innovation management theories retain their explanatory power as market structures change.

Design/methodology/approach

Historical case studies of four successive disruptive lighting innovations are used: incandescent light bulbs, fluorescent light bulbs, compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFBs) and light emitting diodes (LEDs). Descriptions of each innovation include the new technologies, the evolving market structures, and how the innovating companies managed their risks during the transitions.

Findings

This paper finds that two contemporary theories on absorptive capacity and disruptive innovations retain validity and remain broadly applicable even as market structures change overtime from oligopoly and cartel to free market competition.

Originality/value

By juxtaposing historic incandescent and fluorescent bulb innovations in constrained market conditions with modern CFB and LED innovations in free market conditions, this paper expands understanding of the lighting history to include the past two decades. It also expands the applicability of innovation theories by showing that they apply to various and changing market structures.

Details

Journal of Management History, vol. 17 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1751-1348

Keywords

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Book part
Publication date: 11 July 2019

Peter Curwen, Jason Whalley and Pierre Vialle

Abstract

Details

Disruptive Activity in a Regulated Industry
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78973-473-7

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