Innovation communities and social capital theory
Recently, the role of communities that engage in innovation activities has received increasing attention in the academic literature (Bansemir, Neyer, & Möslein, 2012; Franke & Shah, 2003). For instance, Füller, Matzler, and Hoppe highlight the role of brand communities in the context of innovation and state: “Members of brand communities are considered an especially valuable source of innovation because they are passionate about the brand and experienced with its products […] and because they support each other in solving problems and in generating new product ideas” (2008: 609). As another example, di Gangi and Wasko argue: “[U]ser innovation communities […] are becoming increasingly influential in an organization’s decisionmaking process regarding the adoption of new innovations” (2009: 303).
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