In today's dynamic, complex and interconnected environments, interfirm networks in its various forms (e.g. franchising, retail and service chains, cooperatives, financial networks, joint ventures, strategic alliances, clusters, public-private partnerships, digital platforms) are becoming increasingly important in helping firms improve their competitive position through an enhanced access to innovation, complementary resources and capabilities otherwise not available to them. Driven by increased performance pressures in unpredictable environments, firms embedded in networks are increasingly moving from cooperators to collaborators as value co-creators. The aim of this introductory article is to discuss the role of innovation in business networks by focusing on two major topics: Network innovation versus innovation through networks. In addition, we provide an overview of the articles included in the special issue on Networks and Innovation focusing on the questions: (1) what is the impact of network characteristics on a firm's innovation?; and (2) what are the determinants of innovation in interfirm networks?

Innovation through networks, Network innovation, Networked firms, Theoretical perspectives on networks and innovation, Value co-creation,
Industrial Marketing Management
Erasmus University Rotterdam

Yaqub, M.Z. (Muhammad Zafar), Srećković, M. (Marijana), Cliquet, G, Hendrikse, G.W.J, & Windsperger, J. (2020). Network innovation versus innovation through networks. Industrial Marketing Management, 90, 79–89. doi:10.1016/j.indmarman.2020.07.001