How Access to Resources Affects Complementor Innovation in Platform Ecosystems

Thomas Hurni, Thomas Huber, Oliver Krancher, Jens Dibbern

Research output: Conference Article in Proceeding or Book/Report chapterBook chapterResearch


Platform owners must ensure that the ecosystems around their platforms remain as innovative as possible to meet market needs and keep pace with competing platform ecosystems. To this end, platform owners either attract new complementors with innovative complements or foster innovation among existing complementors. This study takes the perspective of complementors to understand the conditions under which access to the platform owner’s resources contributes to the complementor’s innovativeness. Based on survey data from 179 complementors of different software ecosystems, our findings support the supposition that access to the platform owner's valuable technical and commercial capital drives the complementor’s product and process innovativeness. When it comes to access to social capital (e.g., reputation effects, quality signaling), benefits for innovation (limited to production innovation) only accrue under the condition that the platform owner invests in partner-specific information sharing. Our findings contribute to a better understanding of the role of platform design and partnership management practices by the platform owner in shaping complementor innovation.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDigitalization Across Organizational Levels
Place of PublicationCham, Switzerland
Publication date2022
ISBN (Print)978-3-031-06542-2
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-031-06543-9
Publication statusPublished - 2022
SeriesProgress in IS


  • Platform ecosystems
  • governance
  • innovation


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