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Open Innovation In Practice

Flanders’ Plastic Vision (FPV) is the coordinating organization of the Flemish plastics and rubber converting industry. On 10 May 2011, FPV organized a workshop entitled ‘Open Innovation (OI) in Practice’. The aim of this workshop was to identify both the usefulness and the opportunities of OI by means of some practical examples from industry.

The first presenter was prof. Wim Vanhaverbeke (Hasselt University), who gave his vision on opportunities and barriers when implementing OI principles in SME’s. After a short introduction on the concept of OI, 4 practical examples of the adoption of OI principles in SME’s were presented. For each individual case, specific issues and employed solutions/strategies to deal with these issues were discussed. To conclude, a link to a network of excellence on Open and Collaborative Innovation was provided: Exnovate

The second presentation was given by Dirk Vens (company Curana). Curana is a Flemish SME that manufactures bike equipment and accessories. In the 1990’s, the company had difficulties to meet the strong competition. In result, ideas were sought to diversify from the competitors in order to create a unique position on the market. An example is given in this presentation; the development of a new mudguard that includes both plastic and aluminium parts (“design & sturdiness”). For this, Curana collaborated with Anziplast, a Flemish manufacturer of plastic injection moulding parts. The necessities to start up a collaboration, as well as problems and pitfalls during the entire manufacturing process were elucidated.

The most important message was that in the end, from this collaboration both companies obtained an added value. Curana indeed created a unique position in the market, while Anziplast found entrance to a new industry.

 The second part of the workshop was intended to provide the audience with information on intermediaries that can help them in their innovation process. Three innovation intermediaries presented their services: Creax, NineSigma and Tommorowlab. An interesting website that came up and which offers free innovation tools is More Inspiration.

All presentations are available in paper format. A copy can be received on demand.

For further information

Frédéric Leloup:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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