Interview with Students of Rotterdam School of Management: part 1

Since the end of last year, four different students of the Erasmus university in Rotterdam are researching the topic of collaboration within digitalization. De Digitale Rivier is used as a specific case for their research. In a two-part interview serie they explain their findings until now. In this first part, they give a short introduction of themselves and why De Digitale Rivier is a suitable case.

Can you give a short explanation of yourself and what your focus is within this research?

Robert

I’m Robert Sreberski and have a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and I’m currently pursuing a Master in Innovation Management at RSM. Being passionate about the intersection of technology and business innovation, I hope to bring a new perspective to Digitale Rivier with my thesis. This focuses on defining a framework that will help to leverage new organizational forms. This, in order to enhance collaboration and commitment among agents within interactive spaces of digital social innovations. I aim to research and provide a possible solution that will truly improve the program structure.

Dominique

My name is Dominique van Keeken and I am currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Innovation Management at RSM. Next to that I have been working as a pricing analyst at Unilever. For my master thesis I am currently researching digital innovation ecosystems. More specifically, I want to look at how digital platforms enable the coordination and enhance the value creation of innovation activities among different actors in the ecosystem. I want to expand current literature by looking at the roles these actors have and identify thevalue they create. This will result in a better understanding of the value each of these actors contribute and gain when cooperating in digital innovation ecosystems

Lisa

My name is Lisa Buningh, I am 24 years old and born and raised in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. Growing up in Rotterdam and in an entrepreneurial family really gave me an action rather than words mentality. I am currently persueing an MSC Management of Innovation at RSM. During my Bachelor at the University of Applied Sciences I did two internships: one at a startup and one at a multinational.

Magnus

Hey there, I’m Magnus van Haaren, an innovation advocate that at the age of 16 started prototyping a smart mirror. Unfortunately, I was not able to take it to market, so that is why you don’t see me at the front of a Forbes magazine. However, the market is currently worth 2$ billion if you’re still interested. I’ve always been passionate about the intersection of world-class business, innovation, and technology practices, so much in fact that I spoke at TEDx, was a board member at Erasmus Tech Community and started working as a consulting intern at Accenture. Currently, I’m finalizing my MSc in Management of Innovation at RSM and I’m researching how we should think about a digital innovation ecosystem and perhaps more relevant for you, how to extract rents form multiple ecosystems in a world that is increasingly digitalized.

How did you find out about De Digitale Rivier?

Dominique

I found out about the project when we had to sign up for a thesis research theme at the University. The digitalization topic immediately caught my interest. I also find it interesting to learn more about what government organizations such as Rijkswaterstaat are doing with regards to innovation.

Magnus

De Digitale Rivier flew under my radar until I was presented the organization as a case study by Dr. Juan Pablo Madiedo, professor at RSM. Since then, I was hooked as their core theme is to encourage learning through experimental innovation.

Why is De Digitale Rivier a suitable case for your research?

Robert

De Digitale Rivier is a truly innovative program in an industry that is very focused on traditional enterprise solutions which brings additional challenges. The attempt to motivate external people or users to collaborate on the possible solutions together with partnering companies is a very prospering approach that is known from social innovations. Yet, when embedded into formal organizations it is still not known how to organize it on the meso level in order to enhance collaboration between users and partners with different interests. As it can be seen, the mentioned context as well as a problem is present in Digitale Rivier. which makes it a great case to use in the research.

Lisa

During my research I will focus on who and when to deploy a digitial open innovation. This is in line with the Digitale Rivier since it will focus on bringing parties together to develop projects and innovations.

Magnus

Digitale Rivier is facilitating, experimenting, inspiring and co-creating digital innovation solutions. In order to do come up with digital innovations they are active in multiple ecosystems such as business ecosystems (e.g., project level-experiments), knowledge ecosystems (e.g., universities and governmental agencies) and platform ecosystems (e.g., digital platform). As a result, De Digitale Rivier can provide further insight on the boundaries of a digital innovation ecosystem and provide insight on how to accrue rents in a multi-ecosystem membership model.

Next week, we will publish part two of this interview serie. In this part, the students will give their first explanation on how to improve the program and what valuable lessons they have learned on the application of digitization.

 

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