Purpose The purpose of the project is to equip students with the identification of the key features needed for successful innovation in general and business model innovation in particular, together with an understanding of the nature, characteristics and relative applicability of those features. The project will help to develop and embed the relevant skills, knowledge and capabilities needed to successfully manage innovation in corporations and beyond. Introduction While businesses understand the virtues of innovation, they often have a partial, indeed limited, view of what innovation actually is. For many, perhaps most, the concept of innovation is so closely tied to technological innovation, that they are often considered the same. Technological innovation, which results in product or process innovation, is certainly an important aspect of innovation and, without a doubt, a source of competitive advantage for firms. Yet, technological innovation is not valuable without an appropriate business model. As a consequence, many – too many – organisations, despite clear attributes of technological leadership and superior products/services, have failed when implementing new products/services, because of a poorly designed and inappropriate business model, sometimes at the cost the organisation itself failing. Paradoxically, some less innovative firms have been able to achieve market dominance simply because of a better, more appropriate business model supporting inferior products/services. BMI consulting business Your team work for BMI, a successful consulting business whose focus is business model innovation. Every three months, all of BMI’s consultants meet and report on the progress and the most successful practices of the company they work with/for. The task for this project The main purpose of the project is to assess the existing business innovation practices of one company. You need to choose one company with outstanding business innovation practices, and critically present their historic and current data and track record(s). In so doing you should take account of defined conceptual frameworks and theories in innovation, and their applications. Some key points to be covered in the report:
You need to put forward the relevance of the case, and analyse in detail what makes this company a unique example of success in business innovation. For this, you need to have market data and/or contrast the company with other organisations.You should explore any sort of innovation which has been adopted by the organisation, from products and services, to processes, pricing, value creation, value capture, and business models (among other ideas you may find relevant). The analysis should have multiple perspectives on these topics.You should explore different perspectives on innovation practices to explain the success of the organisation (as a whole or in a particular segment). How does the company approach innovation? Are there alternatives? Why has one approach been preferred over others?You should also make an analysis of the innovation process of the company through time. Has its innovation practice changed through time? Deliverables This is a group* coursework with the following deliverables:A presentation, lasting around 10 minutes: scheduled for 12th December 2017 (during normal lecture time). Slides used in the presentation should also be submitted in a Moodle inbox for grading by 12th December 2017 (10 am), with a maximum of 20 slides**. Weight in final grade: 10%.A business report summarising the results of the study (8,000 words maximum**), to be submitted by 12th January 2018 (10 am) (via Moodle). Weight in the final grade: 90%. *The maximum number of students in a group is 6. ** Standard UCL penalties apply for exceeding the word count: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/srs/academic-manual/c4/module-assessment/#3.12. Do note that in the report tables, diagrams and charts DO count as part of the word count, but not the table of contents. Appendices do not count as part of the word count but will not be marked. They should not contain matters of substance relevant to the main body of work. Please note that the submission of slides is your opportunity also to receive formative feedback and improve the content of your final report. Both parts of this coursework assignment should focus primarily on secondary data. However, primary data may also be used. If so, an appendix should be attached detailing the rationale for collecting primary data, the method used for collecting data, and the original data collected (for instance, transcripts of interviews). The report should include an appendix of a log and minutes of activities/meetings by students. This should detail who was asked to do what and by when, and if they did so. This helps in assessing the organisation of the group work. It also helps where disputes about equity of work between group members arise. The group also will be asked to submit in a folder (or by email) a copy of all documents and references used for producing the project report. This material is to be checked in case of doubts on the content of the submitted report. Very high quality reports may be transformed into teaching case studies by the module leader. In this case, the groups will be asked for permission to have their reports published. Marking schema See the two marking schemas below. Slides and presentation (group coursework): 10% of the final grade Aspect Weight (%) What this means Professional appearance 15% Professional appearance, including use of visual resources, clarity, grammar, and proper use of images, graphs and tables. Logical structure of points. Proper referencing when necessary. Business need 10% Relevance of the case considering the company itself in relation to the market and competitors. Capacity of supporting arguments on the relevance of the case. Quality of analysis 50% Capacity of analysing the case using proper frameworks, robust data and relevant recommendations. Consistency in the analysis, properly linking the framework with the analysis and recommendations. Proper use of theory on innovation practices. Capacity of looking forward, either focusing on the company or beyond (lessons learnt). Presentation in class 25% Flow of arguments and capacity of explaining the analysis in a concise and clear way. Capacity of answering questions. Time management. Report (group coursework): 90% of the final grade Aspect Weight (%) What this means Professional appearance 10% Professional appearance. Use of justified text, numbered pages. Logical structure of points, with sections and titles per section. Easy to read. Charts, bullets, tables etc. used effectively. Proper referencing when necessary. Proper spelling and grammar. Quality of sources and references 10% Choice of relevant sources of information and academic and industry references. Careful selection of references avoiding Garbage-In-Garbage-Out phenomenon. Triangulation of information when necessary. Business need 10% Relevance of the case considering the company itself in relation to the market and competitors. Capacity of supporting arguments on the relevance of the case. Systematic comparison either within particular markets or with competitors, confirming the relevance of the case. Theory 20% Proper choice of theories and conceptual frameworks to analyse the case at hand. The choice of theory should be thought carefully. Arguments should be clear on why the chosen theories and/or conceptual frameworks are adequate to understand the case. Clarity and concision in presenting the theories and/or conceptual frameworks. Good use of the literature, showing that proper research has been done on the adopted theory and/or conceptual framework. Quality of analysis 50% Capacity of analysing the case using proper frameworks, robust data and relevant recommendations. Consistency in the analysis, properly linking the framework to the analysis and recommendations. Proper application of theory on innovation practices. Capacity of looking forward, either focusing on the company or beyond (lessons learnt). Capacity of synthesis. Creative use and combination of theory applied to the analysis of the case.
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