Low-end Innovation: An Investigation of Key Individuals and Organizational Ecosystems

Low-end innovations enable companies to conquer markets and generate profits. They satisfy needs for affordable products and help to solve societal challenges.


  • Lead department Business
  • Institute Institute for Innovation and Strategic Entrepreneurship
  • Research unit Low-end Innovation
  • Funding organisation SNSF
  • Duration (planned) 01.05.2018 - 30.04.2021
  • Project management Sebastian Gurtner
  • Head of project Sebastian Gurtner
  • Keywords Innovation, Low-end, Social Innovation, Disruptive innovation, Bottom of the Pyramid


Low-end innovations enable companies to conquer markets, accelerate growth and generate profits. They satisfy needs for new affordable products and they can help to make healthcare and education affordable and thus solve social challenges in the context of sustainable development. The existing knowledge base is primarily focused on high-end innovations. However, there is little knowledge about the systematic management of low-end innovations. This has a direct impact on companies and markets. For example, managers stated in a survey that low-end innovations rarely generate the expected profit.

Ein Kind spielt Pilot mit einer kleinen Rakte auf dem Rücken in einem Karton.
Mit der richtigen Ideen beginnen einfache Ideen.

Course of action

Five studies examine the characteristics and skills of low-end innovators, develop a valid measuring instrument for analyzing the low-end innovation preference of individuals, evaluate the effect of contextual factors and the role of key people as well as the effectiveness of strategies to support an organizational ecosystems for low-end innovations.