This paper aims to deepen the understanding about when and how the mobilization of resources through strong and weak ties in a focal firm’s network can affect new product success. It addresses two significant gaps in the literature. While prior research has advanced the understanding of how factors around tie strength, resource mobilization, and environmental characteristics relate to new product development, it has yet to offer a more holistic understanding of the interconnected structures and the interplay among these factors. Furthermore, limited insights exist about how firms could utilize resource mobilization approaches in different environmental contexts to enhance new product success. Building on resource dependence theory, this paper contributes to prior work by adopting configuration theoretical considerations and performing an empirical investigation to identify necessary and sufficient conditions for new product success. Based on data from a survey of 354 managers from manufacturing and services firms in the United Kingdom, the study conducts a configurational comparative study based on fuzzy‐set Qualitative Comparative Analysis to examine configurations of strong‐tie and weak‐tie resource mobilization approaches within particular environmental contexts for new product success. The findings reveal alternative, equifinal configurations for new product success, and add to the existing body of work by connecting the notions of network ties, resource mobilization, and context dependence, as well as by developing an integrative framework to explain the interplay of remote and proximate conditions for new product success. For management practice, this study offers guidance in describing and diagnosing business contexts that enhance new product success, and in identifying resource mobilization action repertoires to capitalize on these contexts.
Thornton, S., Henneberg, S., Leischnig, A., & Naudé, P. (2019). It's in the Mix: How Firms Configure Resource Mobilization for New Product Success. Journal of Product Innovation Management, 36(4), 513-531. https://doi.org/10.1111/jpim.12489