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2013/2014  KAN-CM_T88  Managing product product development and innovation, module of Minor in Process Management and Innovation

English Title
Managing product product development and innovation, module of Minor in Process Management and Innovation

Course information

Language English
Exam ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Quarter
Course period Autumn, First Quarter
Changes in course schedule may occur
Wednesday 12.35 -15.10, week 36
Wednesday 12.35 -17.00, week 37-42
Time Table Please see course schedule at e-Campus
Max. participants 70
Study board
Study Board for MSc in Economics and Business Administration
Course coordinator
  • Claus Varnes - Department of Operations Management (OM)
Administrative contact Bente Kildemose Nielsen - bkn.om@cbs.dk
Main academic disciplines
  • Innovation and entrepreneurship
  • Management
  • Organization
Last updated on 08-04-2014
Learning objectives
The students will develop their competences in analyzing complex issues and an ability to focus on managerial dilemmas. Many decision-making situations in the student’s future career will challenge an evaluation of what is relevant and irrelevant. We hope to expand this competence with the focus on managing innovation that contains many strategic challenges and where an overemphasis on type of innovation, for instance, can be devastating for the other.

More specifically, the student will after the course be able to
• Assess the strategic role of innovation in companies and the his-torical perspective on the development of various technologies
• Define different types of innovations and managerial challenges related to those for improving productivity
• Classify different management technologies for management of innovation in operations and in general, and being able to explain the concepts, their objectives, and application in practice.
• Distinguish between different views on the market-customer-technology relationships and the implications for company strategies and management of innovation activities.
Managing product development and innovation, module of Minor in Process Management and Innovation:
Examination form Oral exam based on written product

In order to participate in the oral exam, the written product must be handed in before the oral exam; by the set deadline. The grade is based on an overall assessment of the written product and the individual oral performance.
Individual or group exam Individual
Size of written product Max. 5 pages
Assignment type Synopsis
Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
20 min. per student, including examiners' discussion of grade, and informing plus explaining the grade
Grading scale 7-step scale
Examiner(s) Internal examiner and second internal examiner
Exam period Winter Term
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Course content and structure

How you innovate equals what you innovate iis the core pay-off and the very heart of this course. For instance, some considers poor portfolio management one of the reasons that a number of US carmakers not have been successful over the last years, as they not managed to have fuel-efficient and small cars in the portfolio.

Thus, the course focuses on managerial issues related to product and service development in public and private organizations, that is: What are the managerial challenges and how can we manage those? If true, why did the portfolio of the US carmakers contain so many wrong bets?

Other productivity problems are generally a 50 percent success rate and the observation from practice: many new products are delayed in the development process. High performing organizations are better at using a variety of management tools and have a 12 times higher productvity.

Thus, in order to develop 'high performers', we will discuss definitions and characteristics of innovation, services vs. manufacturing, innovation strategies, the management of creativity and knowledge, implementation of new products, customer involvement/market research techniques, problems of cross-functionality, innovation in business models, and the role of leadership, organizational culture and structure.

Please be aware that this course is also a part of a minor in Process and Innovation Management

Teaching methods
Teaching is a combination of lecturing, group work and presentations, and student and teacher driven discussion. The teaching style is very informal to accelerate learning.

We will use two textbooks and continously contrast the perspectives in each book. This presents a good opportunity (also for the exam) for the exam to discuss similarities and dissimiliraties between the two books.

As a quarter course, we will have long days, but I will do what I can to make it interesting and inspiring. I have good experience with inviting people from coporate life to give us their hints to solving the dilemmas but also to use LEGO-exercises to make points.
Further Information
This course is part of the minor in Process Management and Innovation
Expected literature


  • Goffin and Michell (2010), Innovation Management
  • Cooper (2011), Winning at New Products
Some of the articles from the curriculum (changes may occur):
  • Brown, S. L. & Eisenhardt, K. M. 1995, "Product Development: Past Research, Present Findings, and Future Directions", The Academy of Management Review, vol. 20, no. 2, pp. 343-378.
  • Cooper, R., Dreher, A., (2010) “Voice-of-Customer Methods: What is the Best Source of New-Products Ideas?”, Marketing Management 19 (4): 38-43.
  • Goffin, K., Varnes, J.C., van der Hoven, C., Koners U., (2012), ”Beyond the Voice of the Customer. Ethnographic Market Research” Research Technology Management, July-August.
  • Christiansen, J. C. and Varnes, C. J.: (2009): "Formal rules in product development: sense-making and use, Journal of Product Innovation Management, Vol. 26, pp. 502-519.
  • Christiansen, Birgitte Blomberg and Birgitte HollensenCo-constructing the brand and the product, International Journal of Innovation Management, (2009), Vol. 13, No. 3, (with J).·
  • Christiansen, J. C. and Varnes, C. J.: (2007): "Making Decisions on Innovation: Meetings or Networks?", Creativity and Innovation Management Journal, Vol. 16, No. 3, pp. 282-298.   
  • Bentzen, E., Christiansen, J.C., and Varnes, C.J. (2011): "Decision maker’s attention and quality of information at NPD meetings", Management Decision, Vol. 49, No. 3.
  • Christiansen, J. C. and Varnes, C. J.: (2008): "From models to practice: decision-making at portfolio meetings", International Journal of Quality and Reliability Management, special issue: Best practice project portfolio management, Vol. 25, No. 1, pp. 87-101.
Last updated on 08-04-2014