The successful ability to innovate requires a collaborative attitude towards designing and implementing an overarching innovation strategy. However, this is only one element that contributes to the financial service company’s capability to innovate. The organisational context and culture of the company plays a central role because the established structures and processes drive potential success in mature service lines (i.e. efficient and highly standardised).
Nevertheless, these can be inappropriate for producing radical innovations that reshape the sector’s landscape, change the way business is done and secure continuous value creation. It is critical to align the right structures and processes and to provide leadership, so that the mindset and strategic planning can be infused within the company as a whole.
Innovation in financial services is very different to innovation in the physical product environment. Most innovations can and will be copied by competitors, so looking for innovations catering solely for monetisation purposes is not the best tactic. It is best to use a structural approach, requiring an interdisciplinary, ongoing and incremental process, encapsulating key elements such as skills development, multidisciplinary teams and collaboration. All of these foster the company’s organisational readiness, leading to the effective use and adoption of tools such as social network platforms.
The role of social networks in innovation for financial services is seen as a particularly interesting evolution. The massive outreach of these social media can simultaneously pose a challenge to handle and opportunities to seize.
This special issue will focus on the multifaceted aspects of innovation in and for financial services. It adopts a broad perspective on innovation, encompassing investment products, services such as e- and mobile banking, and process, organisational and marketing innovations. We will particularly consider the various challenges related to innovation in and for financial services, the role of external factors such as regulation, and the recent technological advances which have significantly impacted the way products and services are developed, distributed and marketed.
The issue also aims at exploring practices related to innovation across the ecosystem of financial services, embracing financial firms but also their customers, suppliers, competitors and the new types of organisations with which financial firms simultaneously cooperate and compete. Crowdfunding is also of particular interest to this special issue.
We invite you to submit your papers and look forward to receiving quality contributions. Papers can be purely theoretical or theory-driven, empirical work, either qualitative or quantitative. Submissions from academics, consultants, managers and policy makers exploring innovation are strongly encouraged.
Suitable topics include but are not limited to:
- Characterising innovation in financial services
- Managing innovation and change in financial services
- Crowdfunding and innovative platforms for borrowing and lending
- ICT-enabled innovations in financial services
- Relationships between innovation and performance in financial services
- National, regional and inter-regional innovation systems and policies targeting the financial sector
- Cooperation with universities and research and technology organisations
- Open and collaborative innovation in financial services
- Challenges faced by the financial systems
- Sustainability in finance and new financial instruments
- Collaborative tools for innovation in the financial services sector
- Human capital-related issues in financial services
- Process innovation, performance improvement, lean approaches in financial services
- Role of regulation in the innovation process
- Financing innovation: variety of sources
- Role of intellectual property and informal protection mechanisms
- Framework conditions for innovation
- Role of intangible resources for innovation in service firms
Paper submission: 1 September, 2013
Reviewers' comments: 1 November, 2013
Revised paper submission: 15 December, 2013