Innovation and the Coronavirus

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Articles for w/c 19th April – Tutorial discussion points
Here are some key points from first two articles on the list for this week, as referenced below.
1) Brem, A., Viardot, E. and Nylund, P.A. (2021) ‘Implications of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak for
innovation: Which technologies will improve our lives?’. Technological Forecasting & Social Change. 163
(2021). DOI: 10.1016/j.techfore.2020.120451.
2) Euchner, J. (2020) ‘Innovation and the Coronavirus’. Research-Technology Management. (SeptemberOctober 2020), 63(5), pp.10-11. DOI: 10.1080/08956308.2020.1790245.
What makes these articles particularly interesting?
❖ They relate to the unprecedented time we live in and to a pandemic which has affected all of us.
❖ You can refer to these in your Personal Reflection and in your Case Analysis Companion.
❖ They include many connections to the theories and concepts covered on this module!
‘Inside-out’ perspective, Dynamic Capabilities, Innovation and Strategic Stretch
➢ ‘Inside-out’ perspective: Tesla and Ford adapted their resources, specifically their manufacturing
processes to create and produce medical ventilators (Brem et al., 2021).
– Their dynamic capabilities together with their ability to innovate enabled them to adjust in this way and
to operate in an entirely different industry to the car industry.
➢ Similarly, Burberry adapted its production lines in the UK to manufacture gowns which they donated to
the NHS in April 2020.
Competitive Advantage, Existing Business Models and Economies of Scale
➢ As highlighted by Brem et al. (2021), the number of people engaging in online or e-gaming during the
pandemic has vastly increased.
– Sales were so high during the pandemic that Nintendo’s profits tripled at the end of last year!
– Supports the idea that disruption instigates a change in people’s habits as proposed by Euchner
(2020) but how will Nintendo capitalise on this following the pandemic?
Stakeholders’ interests, Macro Environment (‘outside-in’), Industry Environment (‘outside-in’),
Responsiveness, Megatrends and Collaboration
➢ Polices and processes put in place to protect stakeholders, such as customers and employees.
– Etisalat has, working with the Ministry of Health, initiated providing free vaccines to its eligible
employees based in the UAE in 2021.
– Such a strategy has been implemented as a response to a threat from its macro environment.
➢ Extraordinarily fast vaccination development possible due to responsiveness of Pharmaceutical
companies and the sharing of Big Data analytics (Wang et al., 2018, cited in Brem et al, 2021).*
– Pfizer is one of the front-runners in developing a vaccine but only in collaboration with BioNTech.
(*If you cite an article referenced in another article, be sure to include the full citation in your References.)
A final thought on Innovation, did you know that automation, a Megatrend, has led to Amazon creating
the Amazon Machine Learning University (Euchner, 2020)?

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