Discussion

At the start of this chapter, I argued that innovation opportunities viable for user innovators are likely to extend to many types of innovation in addition to product development. That seemed reasonable because there is nothing in the definition of a viable innovation opportunity that restricts free innovators to product innovation or any other specific kind of innovation (Baldwin and von Hippel 2011). And indeed, we now see that free innovation in the household sector is present within all five basic innovation categories currently measured in OECD nations' innovation statistics (Oslo Manual 2005, paragraph 146).

I conclude, from these early empirical findings, that free innovation is likely to be an important contributor to innovative advances across the entire spectrum of innovation opportunities of interest to individuals in the household sector. This is a very valuable result with respect to improving our understanding of the importance of free innovation, and with respect to learning to both measure and utilize it more effectively.

 
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