This article sets out to explain structures of design management practices around the implementation of product innovation strategies that rely on collaborations with external design consultants, what this article refers to as Collaborative Design Innovation (CDI) strategies. Whilst
design management practices for implementing collaborative approaches to product design innovation have been widely described in design and innovation management literatures, we still know very little about the organizational mechanisms affecting such structures and configurations of design
management practices. This study aims to build theoretical explanations as to how we may understand structures of enacted CDI management practices, which is approached through analyses of how firms strive to strategically align design management practices and (corporate) brand management.
First, the article presents a theoretical framework for analysing such strategic alignment by elaborating relational perspectives on different strategic approaches to brand management – conceptualized as ‘brand logics’ – and CDI management practices. Second, this framework
is then applied to a multiple case study of six Danish small- and medium-sized enterprises operating in the Danish interior design industry. Through within- and cross-case grounded analyses empirical findings reveal relational patterns between two brand logics and two dominant structures of
design management practices. As the main contribution of the article, findings suggest that observed differences in enacted structures of CDI management practices across case-companies may be explained on the basis of understanding firm dominant brand logics. Implications for design management
theory and practice conclude the article.
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design management practices;
product design semantics
Document Type: Research Article
Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, School of Design
Publication date: June 1, 2018
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Intellect is honoured to be publishing its first ever open access journal, Artifact: Journal of Design Practice. Since its first publication in 2007, Artifact has focused on practice-based design research and aims to explore conditions, issues and tasks pertaining to design development in a broad sense. As an international design research journal, Artifact targets the global design research community with the aim of strengthening knowledge sharing and theory building of relevance to design practice. All articles and research notes are subject to double-blind peer-review.
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