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Democratizing Innovation

3.60  ·  Rating details ·  578 ratings  ·  31 reviews
The process of user-centered innovation: how it can benefit both users and manufacturers and how its emergence will bring changes in business models and in public policy.Innovation is rapidly becoming democratized. Users, aided by improvements in computer and communications technology, increasingly can develop their own new products and services. These innovating ...more
Paperback, 204 pages
Published February 17th 2006 by MIT Press (first published 2005)
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Average rating 3.60  · 
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Jun 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 27, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great book .... Good context
Dec 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My area of expertise is open source software the most visible example of the phenomenon von Hippel examines in this book. One of the challenges of OSS governance and planning is that many people want to treat it like a unicorn, a special snowflake that defines its own trends and has no corollaries in other industries.

This book is a fantastic antidote to that thinking: it lays out a theory of distributed innovation that both explains the success of open source software, and places it alongside
Jan 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reading this book along with the EdX MOOC course: 'MITx: uINOV8x_1, User Innovation: A Pathway to Entrepreneurship' was very interesting. I would recommend reading the book as it is recommended on the course, rather than bumbling through at your own pace as it does cement the ideas of the course in place.

I found the formulas difficult to get into, but most of the information was worthwhile and I'm sure I'll revisit it. I particularly liked the sections on freely revealing innovations as I've
Daniela D
Jan 07, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a classic for anyone into innovation mamagement. Though written with a bit much academic language, it is filled with examples of user-led innovations. Users, according to von Hippel, are not customers, but rather the leading edge and super skilled people in a particular area.
Mandi Moon
I read this because I missed grad school and got exactly what I needed from it
Jul 01, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018-read
Interesting concept and approach to this topic.
Jonathan Jeckell
May 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
This book examines different ways innovation can occur, expanding upon the foundation provided by Sources of Innovation and the concept of Lead User Innovation. The first few chapters define characteristics of lead user innovation and venues where it is most likely to occur. This is also known as customer co-creation, where a manufacturer works with particular customers to develop new products. In this case, certain fields (or analogous fields) have extreme users who are not satisfied with the ...more
Victor Gonzalez
May 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
On the book Democratizing Innovation, Eric von Hippel explains all utilization of users for developing innovative products by carefully explains all the aspect related to this concept. Throughout the book we can find the same examples coming over to explain different aspects, but dont get me wrong there are multiple example that contribute to his theory.

Each chapter of the book is dedicated to one aspect; the transition from one chapter to another is smooth and provides a consistent way for
Dec 08, 2010 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 01, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: work-reads
There is no doubt that the continued lower costs and democratization of the tools and distribution of things previously the realm of pros is reshaping our world.

But this book reads like a college textbook. More academia than Malcolm Gladwell or Chris Anderson. Which I guess is good if you're a true researcher.

There's definitely good content and ideas to be had here, but for me it could be delivered just as effectively as a Forrester Report.

The book is available free in digital form online so
Oct 13, 2013 rated it liked it
I like the basic premisse of the book: innovation is not only done by manufacturers, but also by customer organizations, or even individual customers. I like the way how Von Hippel proves this using nice case studies, and sketches an innovation landscape which involves the customer (e.g. handing out 'innovation kits').
What I don't really like is the amount of text it takes to make this point...
Jeremy Lyon
Mar 29, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
Academic prose always makes my head hurt (and my eyes droop). Why can't we talk about scholarly matters without writing like a robot?

But that said, the ideas in here are interesting and directly applicable to anyone in innovative work. They're not so much entirely original ideas, as ideas embedded in an explanatory framework that enables you to see how and why to apply them.

Reluctantly recommended to anyone interested in how to harness the power of users in the service of innovation.
Nilotpal Das
Mar 01, 2015 rated it did not like it
Extremely boring. like a college book. A whole lot of theory about how individual users and user organizations should be encouraged to do innovation. I was looking for a book about corporate innovation culture, which this book is definitely not.
Patrick Mulder
Jul 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book provides a great summary why and how people want to share know-how. The internet makes community building much easier. This affects how we build products and how companies should tackle innovation.
good book
Apr 06, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
very good book
sreekanth us
Dec 14, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Marghieth Garcia
Jun 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very inspiring. Read while taking the User Innovation online course at MITx. I learned a lot! Thank you to Prof. von Hippel and his excellent team!
Garun Singh
This is really a gud book
hema uk
Jan 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
Nice book
Bobby Verlaan
Sep 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: innovation, social
Great book!
Jul 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Eugene Lee
Jul 30, 2011 rated it liked it
Just ok; nothing earth shattering above and beyond his original book
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Nov 13, 2017
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“hard to create. One will very likely
be rejected with the rebuke that one should not spoil the fun! Pleasure as a motivator can apply to the development of commercially”
“Trial-and-error experimentation can be informal or formal; the underlying principles are the same. As an example on the informal side, consider a user experiencing a need and then developing what eventually turns out to be a new product: the skateboard. In phase 1 of the cycle, the user combines need and solution information into a product idea: “I am bored with roller skating. How can I get down this hill in a more exciting way? Maybe it would be fun to put my skates’ wheels under a board and ride down on that.” In phase 2, the user builds a prototype by taking his skates apart and hammering the wheels onto the underside of a board. In phase 3, he runs the experiment by climbing onto the board and heading down the hill. In phase 4, he picks himself up from an inaugural crash and thinks about the error information he has gained: “It is harder to stay on this thing than I thought. What went wrong, and how can I improve things before my next run down the hill?” 1 likes
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