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How Experts Screen Ideas: The Complex Interplay of Intuition, Analysis, and Sensemaking
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Service Research Center (from 2013).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7426-0337
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Karlstad Business School (from 2013).
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Karlstad Business School (from 2013). Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Service Research Center (from 2013).ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7971-8733
Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Service Research Center (from 2013). Karlstad University, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (starting 2013), Karlstad Business School (from 2013).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7653-5226
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2021 (English)In: The Journal of product innovation management, ISSN 0737-6782, E-ISSN 1540-5885, Vol. 38, no 2, p. 248-270Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Organizations use idea screening to select which ideas will be developed into innovation projects. Extant research has revealed that, during idea screening, expert evaluators use intuition to make rapid holistic decisions about idea quality, analyze ideas in detail to determine their value and employ sensemaking to understand and elaborate on ideas. However, much of this takes place in the minds of the evaluators, which limits our understanding of how experts identify good ideas. This study addresses the issue by mapping the activities that expert evaluators use to screen ideas and by examining how these activities are used to identify high quality ideas. To study this, 204 idea screening cases were collected, using the think aloud method on two samples of experts. The data were analyzed using grounded theory techniques to outline the range of idea screening activities that expert evaluators use and then complemented with fuzzy set qualitative comparative analysis (fsQCA) to understand how these activities are combined together to make judgments of idea quality. The findings break down intuition, analysis, and sensemaking into seven key activities that experts use when screening ideas and detail their dimensions on the micro‐level. The fsQCA further shows that experts combine these activities into distinct patterns in order to find high quality ideas, where sensemaking plays a crucial role. This demonstrates that finding high quality ideas often requires effortful interpretation, while also generating opportunities to develop ideas further. These findings add depth to our understanding of how evaluators think when screening ideas, suggesting that expert evaluators can be used for both the screening and development of ideas during the idea screening stage. Integrating idea development into screening can potentially lead to the more effective use of resources, while saving time at the front‐end of innovation.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
John Wiley & Sons, 2021. Vol. 38, no 2, p. 248-270
Keywords [en]
Idea screening, Intuition, Sensmaking, fsQCA
National Category
Economics and Business
Research subject
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-82889DOI: 10.1111/jpim.12559ISI: 000611959200001Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85100065324OAI: oai:DiVA.org:kau-82889DiVA, id: diva2:1529153
Available from: 2021-02-17 Created: 2021-02-17 Last updated: 2021-07-08Bibliographically approved

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Publisher's full textScopushttps://doi.org/10.1111/jpim.12559

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Sukhov, AlexandreSihvonen, AnttiNetz, JohanMagnusson, PeterOlsson, Lars E.

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Sukhov, AlexandreSihvonen, AnttiNetz, JohanMagnusson, PeterOlsson, Lars E.
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The Journal of product innovation management
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