The importance of the Front End of Innovation (FEI) for product innovation success is widely acknowledged. However, scholarly knowledge of how this messy “getting started” phase can best be managed remains fuzzy. One reason for the fuzziness is that extant work has used seemingly incompatible outcomes and antecedents as well as inconsistent definitions. The empirical evidence for several antecedents is conflicting, with more and more authors arguing that the FEI should be managed differently depending on project, industry or organizational characteristics. As a result of this debate in combination with the incompatible and even conflicting empirical evidence, we do not know whether overall antecedents of FEI management success actually do exist and, if so, what these factors are. To make an important step forward in resolving the fuzziness surrounding the successful management of the FEI, this study presents an overarching conceptual framework of the antecedents of FEI management success that distinguishes performance at the FEI and the overall product innovation project levels and tests this framework with a meta-analytic methodology. The analysis of 259 effect sizes from 80 independent samples obtained from 86 studies reveals 13 overall antecedents that are consistent indicators of FEI management success at both the FEI and the overall project performance levels and three antecedents that increase performance at either the FEI or the overall product innovation project level. The results indicate that the importance of many antecedents for either the FEI or the overall project levels varies significantly. For four expected antecedents no significant effect on FEI management success was found. These results allow product innovation managers to pay special attention to the antecedents that are most important in managing the FEI. Moreover, the findings have important implications for different fields of product innovation management theory.
|Title of host publication||Proceedings of the 25th Innovation and Product Development Management Conference, June 10-13, Porto, Portugal|
|Publication status||Published - Jun 2018|
|Event||25th Innovation and Product Development Management Conference( IPDMC2018) - Porto, Portugal|
Duration: 13 Jun 2018 → 18 Jun 2018
|Conference||25th Innovation and Product Development Management Conference( IPDMC2018)|
|Period||13/06/18 → 18/06/18|