Keywords: innovation process, technological innovation, knowledge management, knowledge transfer, academic research unit, developing countries, Thailand, video conferencing, new product development, NPD, new service development, university research
Managing knowledge in new product and service development: a new management approach for innovative research organisations
In developing countries, academic research units are regarded as the main agents that create new knowledge for innovation in commercial products and services. This paper presents a research framework for analysing the role of Knowledge Management (KM) in improving and sustaining research activities in those units that led to important product or service innovation in the local market. KM practices used effectively in the product or service innovation process are illustrated with the case study of a very successful R&D laboratory at Kasetsart University in Bangkok, Thailand. Findings indicate that: KM practices are embedded in the innovation process and thus, have a strong impact on the success of research projects; a distinguished research idea is most important in achieving outstanding research and commercialisation results; online video conferences and web-based knowledge repository are highly effective tools for capturing, transferring, storing and integrating knowledge among local researchers and external experts from research partners abroad.