15.351 | Fall 2002 | Graduate

Managing the Innovation Process


The final 10-15 page paper will give students the chance to more closely examine a weekly topic from the course. A list of supplemental readings is provided and the paper should include citations from the selected week. The final paper may take one of three forms:

Case Study

  • illustrate how experiences in a company relate to one of the weekly topics
  • company background info can come from personal experience or public documents
  • think about important facts, events, people, decisions, and turning points in the case
  • key evaluation criteria for case study is an interesting story about managing innovation
  • format of paper should model a Harvard Business School case, such as Corporate New Ventures at Procter & Gamble or Digital Equipment Corporation: The Kodak Outsourcing Agreement

Critical Essay

  • write an analytical assessment of one of the weekly topics
  • typologies, archetypes, or frameworks can come from your observations or the articles
  • think about exceptions to the rule, competing hypotheses, and generalizability of ideas
  • key evaluation criteria for critical essay is a unique perspective on managing innovation
  • format of paper should model an overview article from the readings, such as Gunfire at sea: A case study of innovation or Organizing and leading “heavyweight” development teams

Research Report

  • empirically investigate an idea related to one of the weekly topics
  • data can come from surveys, interviews, or third-party sources
  • think about alternative explanations, unmeasured variables, and response biases
  • key evaluation criteria for research report is solid evidence about managing innovation
  • format of paper should model a data-driven article from the readings, such as Special boundary roles in the innovation process or Interpretive barriers to successful product innovation in large firms

Online Forum: What can we learn about “managing the innovation process” from your final paper? (be sure to include which weekly topic you selected and readings you cited)

Course Info

As Taught In
Fall 2002
Learning Resource Types
Lecture Notes
Written Assignments