It is finally out. We worked a lot, we insisted with Editors and Reviewers, and we made it. I normally don’t celebrate papers this way. I am very happy this time around.
Our paper “European SMEs’ engagement in open innovation When the important thing is to win and not just to participate, what should innovation policy do?” just published on Technological Forecasting and Social Change is an attempt to signal when an SME is truly implementing an Open Innovation strategy… or not.
This exploratory study proposes an original methodology to operationalize and signal SMEs’ engagement in challenging dimensions of implementing Open Innovation. We verify whether the European SME Instrument is achieving its goal of providing public funds to the best SMEs in Europe, the ‘EU Innovation Champions’. We test our methodology on a sample of SMEs operating in the digital sector. We found that the SMEs awarded the grants are less engaged in the challenging dimensions of Open Innovation than companies that did not receive any funding. This is contrary to the intended goals of the grants. We provide policy and methodological implications relevant for the design of better OI-informed policy and the more effective evaluation of companies participating in the SME Instrument.