This is a picture of ESMT books and working papers


ESMT Berlin publishes in international academic journals, which are first-class in their respective fields. Research also provides cutting-edge and profound insights for the business community as well as the classroom through managerial publications and case studies. This rare integration of research and practice makes ESMT Berlin an outstanding location for generating relevant and ground-breaking knowledge.

Journal Article

Risky recombinations: Institutional gatekeeping in the innovation process

Organization Science 28 (1): 133–151
John-Paul Ferguson, Gianluca Carnabuci (2017)
Subject(s): Human resources management/organizational behavior, Technology, R&D management
Keyword(s): Innovation, knowledge recombination, recombinant breadth, differential selection, patent, patent approval, patent impact, institutional gatekeeping
JEL Code(s): O310, O330

Theories of innovation and technical change posit that inventions that combine knowledge across technology domains have greater impact than inventions drawn from a single domain. The evidence for this claim comes mostly from research on patented inventions and ignores failed patent applications. We draw on insights from research into institutional gatekeeping to theorize that, to be granted, patent applications that span technological domains must have higher quality than otherwise comparable, narrower applications. Using data on failed and successful patent applications, we estimate an integrated, two-stage model that accounts for this differential selection. We find that more domain-spanning patent applications are less likely to be approved, and that controlling for this differential selection reduces the estimated effect of knowledge recombination on innovative impact by about one-third. By conceptualizing the patent-approval process as a form of institutional gatekeeping, this paper highlights the institutional underpinnings of and constraints on the innovation process.

© 2017, INFORMS

Volume 28
Issue 1
Pages 133–151

Journal Article

The 3 stages of a country embracing renewable energy

Harvard Business Review
Subject(s): Economics, politics and business environment
Keyword(s): Energy transition, decentralized energy generation, Energiewende, Blockchain, P2P networks

The world is undergoing a transformation in how it gets its power. In Germany, we have a word for it: Energiewende. It means energy turning point. (We use the same word Wende to describe the fall of the Berlin Wall and all the dramatic changes that came with it.)

In this transformation, we are witnessing the decarbonization of power consumption, thanks to the large-scale deployment of renewable energy sources such as wind and solar. Earlier this year, the European Union announced that its climate and renewable energy targets—a 20% cut in greenhouse gas emissions, 20% of EU energy from renewable sources, and a 20% improvement in energy efficiency—are actually on track to realization by the year 2020.

ISSN 0017-8012 (Print)

Journal Article

Evaluating novelty: The role of panels in the selection of R&D projects

Academy of Management Journal 60 (2): 433–460
2016 TIE / VHB 2016 Jürgen Hauschildt Award best research publication in innovation management, 2016 EBS Best-Paper-Award “Innovation Management” 2016
Paola Criscuolo, Linus Dahlander, Thorsten Grohsjean, Ammon J. Salter (2017)
Subject(s): Technology, R&D management
Keyword(s): innovation search, novelty, professional services firms, R&D project selection, selection panels

Building on a unique, multi-source, and multi-method study of R&D projects in a leading professional service firm, we develop the argument that organizations are more likely to fund projects with intermediate levels of novelty. That is, some project novelty increases the share of requested funds received, but too much novelty is difficult to appreciate and is selected against. While prior research has considered the characteristics of the individuals generating project ideas, we shift the focus to panel selectors and explore how they shape the evaluation of novelty. We theorize that a high panel workload reduces panel preference for novelty in selection, whereas a diversity of panel expertise and a shared location between panel and applicant increase preference for novelty. We explore the implications of these findings for theories of innovation search, organizational selection, and managerial practice.

With permission of the Academy of Management

Volume 60
Issue 2
Pages 433–460

Journal Article

The biases that keep good R&D projects from getting funded

Harvard Business Review
Paola Criscuolo, Linus Dahlander, Thorsten Grohsjean, Ammon Salter (2017)
Subject(s): Technology, R&D management

The researchers explored how organizations decide to invest in different innovations by studying a large professional service firm with offices in 37 countries. They analyzed all of the R&D project proposals submitted by its staff, including information about which projects received funding, and found that managers don’t always carefully weigh the pros and cons of each project and that biases can creep into the decision-making process. They found that there is a sweet spot of novelty that makes R&D committees more likely to fund a project, and that certain characteristics of the R&D selection committee can also influence funding decisions.

ISSN 0017-8012 (Print)

Journal Article

Replication data collection highlights value in diversity of replication attempts

Scientific Data 4 (170028)
Kurt Andrew DeSoto, Martin Schweinsberg (2017)
Subject(s): Human resources management/organizational behavior
Keyword(s): Crowdsourcing science, replication, reproducibility

Researchers agree that replicability and reproducibility are key aspects of science. A collection of Data Descriptors published in Scientific Data presents data obtained in the process of attempting to replicate previously published research. These new replication data describe published and unpublished projects. The different papers in this collection highlight the many ways that scientific replications can be conducted, and they reveal the benefits and challenges of crucial replication research. The organizers of this collection encourage scientists to reuse the data contained in the collection for their own work, and also believe that these replication examples can serve as educational resources for students, early-career researchers, and experienced scientists alike who are interested in learning more about the process of replication.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License CC-BY.

Volume 4
Issue 170028
ISSN 2052-4463 (Online)

Journal Article

Adverse incentives in crowdfunding

Management Science 63 (3): 587–608
Thomas Hildebrand, Manju Puri, Jörg Rocholl (2017)
Subject(s): Finance, accounting and corporate governance
Keyword(s): Financial disintermediation, crowdfunding, consumer lending
JEL Code(s): G01, G20, G21, G23

This paper analyzes the substantially growing markets for crowdfunding, in which retail investors lend to borrowers without financial intermediaries. Critics suggest these markets allow sophisticated investors to take advantage of unsophisticated investors. The growth and viability of these markets critically depends on the underlying incentives. We provide evidence of perverse incentives in crowdfunding that are not fully recognized by the market. In particular we look at group leader bids in the presence of origination fees and find that these bids are (wrongly) perceived as a signal of good loan quality, resulting in lower interest rates. Yet these loans actually have higher default rates. These adverse incentives are overcome only with sufficient skin in the game and when there are no origination fees. The results from the analysis in this paper provide more general implications for crowdfunding, its structure and regulation.

© 2016 INFORMS

Volume 63
Issue 3
Pages 587–608

Journal Article

LeChatelier-Samuelson principle in games and pass-through of shocks

Journal of Economic Theory 168 (March): 44–54
Alexei Alexandrov, Özlem Bedre-Defolie (2017)
Subject(s): Economics, politics and business environment
Keyword(s): LeChatelier principle, cost passthrough, multiproduct oligopoly
JEL Code(s): C72, D43, D11

The LeChatelier-Samuelson principle states that, as a reaction to a shock, an agent's short-run adjustment of an affected action is smaller than its long-run adjustment (when the agent can also adjust other related actions). We extend the principle to strategic environments where the long-run adjustment also accounts for other players adjusting their strategies. We show that the principle holds for supermodular games (strategic complements) satisfying monotone comparative statics and provide sufficient conditions for the principle to hold in games of strategic substitutes/heterogeneity. We discuss the principle's implications for cost pass-through of multiproduct firms.

Volume 168
Issue March
Pages 44–54

Journal Article

Why some crowdsourcing efforts work and others don't

Harvard Business Review
Linus Dahlander, Henning Piezunka (2017)
Subject(s): Economics, politics and business environment, Finance, accounting and corporate governance
Keyword(s): Crowd sourcing, open innovation, attention, suggestions, ideation, openness, user innovation, success bias, social media
JEL Code(s): O00

Organizations strive to tap into the potential of crowdsourcing by asking people around the world to come up with ideas. But what makes crowdsourcing work? We conducted a large-scale research project to understand why some organizations succeed to attract crowds and others fail.

ISSN 0017-8012 (Print)

Journal Article

What every business leader should know and do about digital

Cutter Business Technology Journal 30 (1): 6–13
Joe Peppard, John Thorp (2017)
Subject(s): Information technology and systems
Volume 30
Issue 1
Pages 6–13

Journal Article

The open innovation research landscape: Established perspectives and emerging themes across different levels of analysis

Industry and Innovation 24 (1): 8–40
Marcel Bogers, Ann-Kristin Zobel, Allan Afuah, Esteve Almirall, Sabine Brunswicker, Linus Dahlander, Lars Frederiksen et al. (2017)
Subject(s): Information technology and systems, Technology, R&D management
Keyword(s): open innovation, review, research, theory, contingencies, knowledge, collaboration
JEL Code(s): D83, O30

This paper provides an overview of the main perspectives and themes emerging in research on open innovation (OI). The paper is the result of a collaborative process among several OI scholars – having a common basis in the recurrent Professional Development Workshop on “Researching Open Innovatio” at the Annual Meeting of the Academy of Management. In this paper, we present opportunities for future research on OI, organised at different levels of analysis. We discuss some of the contingencies at these different levels, and argue that future research needs to study OI – originally an organisational-level phenomenon – across multiple levels of analysis. While our integrative framework allows comparing, contrasting and integrating various perspectives at different levels of analysis, further theorising will be needed to advance OI research. On this basis, we propose some new research categories as well as questions for future research – particularly those that span across research domains that have so far developed in isolation.

Volume 24
Issue 1
Pages 8–40

Journal Article

Bitstream Fault Injections (BiFI) – Automated fault attacks against SRAM-based FPGAs

IEEE Transactions on Computers PP (99): 1–13
Pawel Swierczynski, Georg T. Becker, Amir Moradi, Christof Paar (2017)
Subject(s): Information technology and systems, Technology, R&D management
Keyword(s): Bitstream encryption vulnerability, FPGA security, bitstream fault injection, automated key recovery, AES
Volume PP
Issue 99
Pages 1–13

Journal Article

Sustainability lessons from the front lines

Sloan Management Review 58 (2): 71–78
CB Bhattacharya, Paul Polman (2017)
Subject(s): Ethics and social responsibility
Keyword(s): Business models, leading change, sustainability initiatives, sustainability strategy
Volume 58
Issue 2
Pages 71–78

Journal Article

How do brokers broker? Tertius gaudens, tertius iungens, and the temporality of structural holes

Organization Science 27 (6): 1343–1360
Eric Quintane, Gianluca Carnabuci (2017)
Subject(s): Human resources management/organizational behavior
Keyword(s): Brokerage process, unembedded interactions, tertius gaudens and tertius iungens, relational event model

Organizational network research has demonstrated that multiple benefits accrue to people occupying brokerage positions. However, the extant literature offers scant evidence of the process postulated to drive such benefits (information brokerage) and therefore leaves unaddressed the question of how brokers broker. We address this gap by examining the information-brokerage interactions in which actors engage. We argue that the information-brokerage strategies of brokers differ in three critical ways from those of actors embedded in denser network positions. First, brokers more often broker information via short-term interactions with colleagues outside their network of long-term relationships, a process we label “unembedded brokerage.” Second, when they engage in unembedded brokerage, brokers are more likely than are actors in dense network positions to intermediate the flow of information between the brokered parties, consistent with a tertius gaudens strategy. Conversely, and third, when they broker information via their network of long-term ties (embedded brokerage), brokers are more likely than are densely connected actors to facilitate a direct information exchange between the brokered parties, consistent with a tertius iungens strategy. Using a relational event model, we find support for our arguments in an empirical analysis of email communications among employees in a medium-sized, knowledge-intensive organization, as well as in a replication study. The theory and evidence we present advance a novel, temporal perspective on how brokers broker, which reconciles structural and process views of network brokerage. Our findings substantiate the notion of brokers as a dynamic force driving change in organizational networks, and they help to integrate within a unitary explanatory framework tertius iungens and tertius gaudens views of brokerage.

© 2016, INFORMS

Volume 27
Issue 6
Pages 1343–1360

Journal Article

The impact of blockchain on the energy sector – expectations from German energy executives

European Business Review November–December: 41–44
Christoph Burger, Andreas Kuhlmann, Philipp Richard, Jens Weinmann (2016)
Subject(s): Economics, politics and business environment
Keyword(s): Technology, big data & analytics, Internet of Things
Issue November–December
Pages 41–44

Journal Article

When do customers get what they expect? Understanding the ambivalent effects of customers' service expectations on satisfaction

Journal of Service Research 19 (4): 361–379
Johannes Habel, Sascha Alavi, Christian Schmitz, Janina-Vanessa Schneider, Jan Wieseke (2016)
Subject(s): Marketing
Keyword(s): Service expectations, customer satisfaction, information processing, ability to evaluate, motivation to evaluate
JEL Code(s): M310

Extant research established that customers’ expectations play an ambivalent role in the satisfaction formation process: while higher expectations are more difficult to meet and thus cause dissatisfaction, they simultaneously increase satisfaction via customers’ perceived performance owing to a placebo effect. However, to date, knowledge is scarce on the question under which conditions either the positive or negative effect of expectations on satisfaction prevails. Building on information processing theory, the authors hypothesize that an essential contingency of the indirect, placebo-based effect is the degree to which customers are able and motivated to process a service experience. Three studies with a total of over 4,000 customers in different service contexts provide strong evidence for this hypothesis. Thus, managers are well advised to provide a realistic or even understated prospect if the service context favors customers’ ability or motivation to evaluate. Conversely, if customers are neither able nor motivated to evaluate the service, increasing customer expectations represents a viable strategy to enhance satisfaction. Relatedly, if customers hold low service expectations, managers should foster customers’ ability and motivation to evaluate the service. In contrast, if service expectations are high, managers may benefit from reducing the likelihood that customers overly focus on the service performance.

With permission of SAGE Publishing

Volume 19
Issue 4
Pages 361–379