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Mechanisms of disruptive technological change: Case studies in transformation of traditional industries

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings in 2017 Portland International Conference in Management and Engineering (PICMET)
Subtitle of host publication(PICMET) 9-13 July 2017
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-890843-36-6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2017
Publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventPortland International Conference on Management of Engineering and Technology -
Duration: 1 Jan 1900 → …


ConferencePortland International Conference on Management of Engineering and Technology
Period1/01/00 → …


The purpose of the manuscript is to use grounded theory building method to investigate three industry contexts that show disruptive innovations based in digital technologies that change the dynamics in industry competition. Specifically, we investigate the mechanisms of disruption in these cases and seek common features of change. Our analysis builds on mechanisms as detecting actors, their properties, and start- and end-states of the system under change and activities of the actors that bring about the change. Our analysis shows common themes that are exhibited throughout all the cases. One of these mechanisms is de-coupling of traditional value chain activities. These de-coupling mechanisms are driven by the formation of innovation ecosystems rather than traditional value chains. This is further accelerated by the emergence of platforms and digital technologies at large. We propose, based on our results, some fundamental mechanisms that are driving industry transformation due to digitalization. We also discuss managerial and theoretical implications of our results in detail.