A1 Journal article (refereed), original research

Innovation process and uncertainties in resource-constrained environments: A case from the water service sector in East Africa

Open Access hybrid publication

Publication Details
Authors: Hyvärinen Anne, Keskinen Marko, Levänen Jarkko
Publisher: Elsevier
Publication year: 2020
Language: English
Related Journal or Series Information: Environmental Science and Policy
Volume number: 114
Start page: 242
End page: 252
Number of pages: 11
ISSN: 1462-9011
eISSN: 1873-6416
JUFO-Level of this publication: 2
Open Access: Open Access hybrid publication


Innovation processes face significant and not well-understood
uncertainties in resource-constrained environments in developing
countries. Through a case study of a water innovation process focused on
Kenya, this article studies the prevailing uncertainties and management
principles. With the help of a framework that combines information on
technological, organizational, commercial and social aspects, our study
identifies uncertainties in four distinctive stages of
resource-constrained innovation: (1) Ideation and conceptualization, (2)
Learning-based product and business development, (3) Scrutinized
product and business development and (4) Commercialization. We recognize
three principles required to manage uncertainties and develop
successful resource-constrained innovations: (1) the utilization of
versatile research and development approaches, (2) building internal
acceptability, trust and legitimacy and (3) leveraging range of
partnerships and networks to access complementary resources and
capabilities in different process stages. Our findings suggest that
management of uncertainties requires proactive utilization of partner
networks and context-specific strategies in different stages. With this
research, we contribute to the understanding of innovation processes by
advancing process-based knowledge of water innovation, uncertainties and
related management strategies in resource-constrained environments.

Last updated on 2020-02-10 at 09:32