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This chapter provides a background to the book. It introduces the notion of innovation and discusses how it can be managed, in particular through innovation contests. A life-cycle perspective on innovation contests is introduced, which shows how a contest moves through the phases of pre-contest, contest, and post-contest. This perspective is used throughout the book and the activities of the life-cycle are described and analysed in separate chapters, moving from goal setting and stakeholder engagement over operations management to business model design and barrier management.