THE ROLE OF MARKET AND TECHNICAL INFORMATION GENERATION IN NEW PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT
journal contributionposted on 15.06.2019, 00:00 by Anna Shaojie Cui, Yazhen Xiao
Firms are investing an increasing amount of time and resources to gather information about market and technology in new product development (NPD). Yet there lacks a consistent understanding of whether such costly information generation activities can improve product outcomes. More importantly, it is unclear how the benefit of market information and technical information generation may differ and how they may jointly impact new product performance. This study examines the role of market and technical information generation in NPD in three ways: (1) It contrasts the effects of market and technical information generation on product outcomes; (2) It identifies conditions that moderate the effects of market and technical information generation and further investigates how the moderating effects differ for these two types of activities; (3) It examines the joint effect of market and technical information generation to understand potential synergies between them. Using survey data at the NPD project level, we find that market information generation has an inverted U-shaped effect on new product advantage, whereas the effect of technical information generation follows a U-shape. Furthermore, these effects are moderated differently by two conditions: a firm’s R&D intensity that influences a NPD project’s need for different types of information, and the use of multi-disciplinary teams that affects the degree to which information can be shared and utilized to improve product design. The findings provide important implications for organizational learning and shed light on how to manage information generation activities to achieve NPD success.