2018 | 9 | 29 | 113-130
Article title

Disruptive innovation: A historical review and recent developments

Title variants
Languages of publication
RESEARCH OBJECTIVE: This paper aims to summarize and discuss key findings in the literature around the concept of disruption or disruptive innovation and how the ad hoc academic knowledge evolved in the recent couple of decades. THE RESEARCH PROBLEM AND METHODS: The research method is based on historical and critical literature review. Hence, this paper discusses other scholars’ research and findings around the topic of disruption innovation. THE PROCESS OF ARGUMENTATION: This paper starts with a summary of Christensen’s disruption theory (1997) followed by some important clarifications of ad hoc definitions. Then it inspects some of this theory weaknesses highlighted in the literature before investigating the main recent developments in the last couple of decades and the related research venues. RESEARCH RESULTS: Despite the positive efforts made by many scholars to reconcile Christensen’s disruption theory (1997) with the reality of the market and empirical data and to clarify the concept of disruption and its numerous implications and frameworks, some fuzziness and many gaps are still persisting in the extant literature. Namely, a normalized and exhaustive disruption framework seems to be missing hitherto. CONCLUSIONS, INNOVATIONS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS: This paper provides a refined picture of the academic discussion around disruption innovation, and is hence a useful starting point for researchers interested in topics related to “innovation management” who would like to investigate further avenues of research directly or indirectly linked to disruption.
Physical description
  • Abernathy, W.J. (1976). The Productivity Dilemma: Roadblock to Innovation in the Automobile Industry. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
  • Adner, R. & Zemsky, R. (2005). Disruptive technologies and the emergence of competition. RAND Journal of Economics, 36(2) 2.
  • Brynjolfsson, E., Mitt, L., & Kim, H. (2011). Strength in Numbers: How Does Data-Driven Decision Making Affect Firm Performance? SSRN Electronic Journal 1, 4-5. DOI: 10.2139/ssrn.1819486.
  • Burgelman, R.A. & Grove, A.S. (2007). Cross-boundary disruptors: powerful interindustry entrepreneurial change agents. Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal, 1, 315-327.
  • Casadesus-Masanell, R. & Ricart, J.E. (2010). From strategy to business models and onto tactics. Long Range Planning, 43, 195-215.
  • Chandy, R. & Tellis, G.J. (1998). Organizing for radical innovation: The overlooked role of willingness to cannibalize. Journal of Marketing Research, 35(4), 474-487.
  • Charitou, C.D. & Markides, C.C. (2003). Responses to disruptive strategic innovation. Sloan Management Review, 44(2), 55-63.
  • Chesbrough, H. (2007). Business model innovation: It’s not just about technology anymore. Strategy & Leadership, 35, 12-17.
  • Chesbrough, H. & Rosenbloom, R.S. (2002). The role of the business model in capturing value from innovation: Evidence from Xerox corporation’s technology spin-off companies. Industrial and Corporate Change, 11, 529-555.
  • Christensen, C.M. (1992). Exploring the limits of the technology S-curve. Part I: Component technologies. Boston: Harvard University Graduate School of Business Administration.
  • Christensen, C.M. (1997). The Innovator’s Dilemma: when new technologies cause great firms to fail. Boston: Harvard Business School Press, Boston.
  • Christensen, C.M & Raynor, M. (2003). The Innovator’s Solution: Creating and Sustaining Successful Growth. Boston: Harvard Business School Press.
  • Christensen, C.M., Raynor, E.M., & McDonald, R. (2015). What Is Disruptive Innovation? Harvard Business Review, 162, 44-53.
  • Christensen, C.M., Alton, R., Rising, C. & Waldeck, A. (2011). The New M&A Playbook. Harvard Business Review, 89, 48-57.
  • Constant, E.W. (1980). The Origins of the Turbojet Revolution. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press.
  • Cooper, A. & Schendel, D. (1976). Strategic Responses to Technological Threats. Business Horizons, 19, February, 6 l-69.
  • Cortez, N. (2014). Regulating disruptive innovation. Berkeley Technology Law Journal, vol. 29, 175.
  • Danneels, E. (2004). Disruptive technology reconsidered: A critique and research agenda. Journal of Product Innovation Management, 21(4), 246-258.
  • Dosi, G. (1982). Technological paradigms and technological trajectories. Research Policy, 11, 147-162.
  • Duchesneau, T.D. (1979). A study of innovation in manufacturing. Determinants, Processes, and Methodological Issues. Vol I, II. Maine: The social research institute, University of Maine.
  • Foster, R.N. (1986). Innovation: The Attacker’s Advantage. New York: Summit Books.
  • Govindarajan, V. & Kopalle, P.K. (2006a). Disruptiveness of innovations: Measurement and an assessment of reliability and validity. Strategic Management Journal 27(2), 189-199.
  • Hamel, G. & Prahalad, C.K. 2000). On the Precipice of a Revolution with Hamel and Prahalad. Journal of Marketing Management, 16, 95-109.
  • Hannay, N.B. (1980). Technological Innovation: Its Nature and Significance. Bulletin of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Vol. 33, No. 6, 34-48.
  • Henderson, R.M. (2006). The innovator’s dilemma as a problem of organizational competence. J PROD INNOV MANAG, 23, 5-11.
  • Hill, C.W.L. & Jones, G.R. (1998). Strategic Management: An Integrated Approach. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company.
  • Horney, N., Pasmore, B., & O’Shea, T., (2010). Leadership agility: a business imperative for a VUCA world. People & Strateg. 33 (4), 32‑38.
  • Kosała, M. & Wach, K. (2014). Linking Regional Knowledge Laboratory and Growth of SMEs – Empirical Investigation in Southern Region of Poland. Prace Komisji Geografii Przemysłu Polskiego Towarzystwa Geograficznego, 26, 113-131.
  • Kostoff, R.N., Boylan, R., & Simons, G.R. (2004). Disruptive technology roadmaps. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 71(1), 141-159.
  • Markides, C. (2006). Disruptive Innovation: In Need of Better Theory. Journal of Product Innovation Management, 23, 19-25.
  • Marx, M., Gans, J.S., & Hsu, D.H. (2014). Dynamic Commercialization Strategies for Disruptive Technologies: Evidence from the Speech Recognition Industry. Management Science, 60, 3103-3123.
  • Massa, L. & Tucci, C.L. (2013). Business model innovation. The Oxford handbook of innovation management. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  • Moore, G.A. (1995). Inside the Tornado: Marketing Strategies from Silicon Valley’s Cutting Edge. New York: HarperCollins.
  • O’Reilly, C.A. & Tushman, M. (2016). Lead and disrupt: How to solve the innovator’s dilemma. Stanford.
  • Raffaelli R. (2018). Technology Re-emergence: Evidence from Swiss Mechanical Watchmaking, 1970-2008. Administrative Science Quarterly, 1‑43.
  • Roussel, P.A. (1984). Technological Maturity Proves a Valid and Important Concept. Research Management, 27, January-February, 29-34.
  • Sandström, C., Magnusson, M., & Jörnmark, J. (2009). Exploring Factors Influencing Incumbents’ Response to Disruptive Innovation. Creativity and Innovation Management, 18, 8-15.
  • Takahashi, N., Shintaku, J., & Ohkawa, H. (2013). Is technological trajectory disruptive? Annals of Business Administrative Science, 12, 1-12. DOI: 10.7880/abas.12.1.
  • Sood, A. & Tellis, G.J. (2011). Demystifying Disruption: A New Model for Understanding and Predicting Disruptive Technologies. Marketing Science, Vol. 30, No. 2, March-April, 339-349.
  • Sorescu, A. (2017). Data-Driven Business Model Innovation. Journal of Product Innovation Management, 34(5), 691-696.
  • Takahashi, N., Shintaku, J., & Ohkawa, H. (2007). The disruption of technological trajectory: Technical notes on Christensen and Bower (1996).
  • Akamon Management Review, 6(7), 267-274.
  • Tellis, G.J. (2006). Disruptive technology or visionary leadership? Journal of Product Innovation Management, 23(1), 34-38.
  • Turner, D., Schroeck, M., & Shockley, R. (2013). Analytics: The Real‑World use of Big Data in Financial Services. IBM Global Business Services, 1-12.
  • Tushman, M.L. & O’Reilly III, C.A. (2002). Winning through innovation: A practical guide to leading organizational change and renewal. Boston: Harvard Business School Press.
  • Utterback, J.M. (1994). Mastering the Dynamics of Innovation: How Companies can Seize Opportunities in the Face of Technological Change? Boston: Harvard Business School Press.
  • Van, W., Haour, G., & Japp, S. (1991). Permanent Magnets: A Technological Analysis. R&D Management, 34, October, 30 I-308.
  • Wach, K. (2016). Innovartive Behaviour of High-Tech Internationalized Firms: Survey Results from Poland. Entrepreneurial Business and Economics
  • Review, 4(3), 153-165. DOI: 10.15678/EBER.2016.040311
Document Type
Publication order reference
YADDA identifier
JavaScript is turned off in your web browser. Turn it on to take full advantage of this site, then refresh the page.