Assessing Functions of Open Innovation Intermediaries: A Grounded Theory Approach

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Department of Technology Management, Faculty of Management and Economics, Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran.

2 Department of STI Policy, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran.

3 Department of Technology Management, Faculty of Management and Economics, University of Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad, Tehran, Iran


Innovation intermediary entrepreneurs have a critical role in all key players interactions network in the innovation system. These entrepreneurs are well known in transferring technological knowledge and building optimum bridge between supply and demand. However emphasizing the special position of innovation intermediaries in developed countries, in Iran we are facing with deep technological gap in the country and many other innovative processes challenges due to Geopolitical and economic challenges. This research aims to investigate the influencing factors in the innovation mediator’s roles and responsibilities in the open innovation platform and aims to find solutions, helping innovation entrepreneurs could have a successful and valuable activity and function in the country. The goal of this research is looking fundamentally to the points which using the qualitative method (Grounded Theory), with semi-structured in-depth technical interview with 12 experts in this field and 10 mediating innovation companies .Then in next step, analyzing  those data’s and  reaching the theoretical saturation point, with the use of open, axial and selective coding. The resulting paradigm model was determined based on the central phenomenon (innovation mediation function), affected by the fundamental condition, background conditions and intervening variables. The results of this research are divided in six main indicators including: the systematic innovation structure, the interaction network of policy-makers and facilitating institutions, the maturity of innovation thinking, the awareness of industry managers in innovation activities, competitiveness in technology and the ability of intermediaries and in the last, identified the innovator capabilities.


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