The existing ways of doing business are constantly changing. This is due to rapid changes in global economy. The opportunities in the present global markets have to be exploited at a rapid pace. The large centralized organizations which have established themselves over a considerable period may find it very difficult to introduce or diversify their product range in the present globalization scenario. They need to realize that managing technical knowledge, as well as innovative process in conducting business, is the way to remain competitive in the global market. Every business enterprise needs unique challenges to face in its sector. It is high time that they take advantage of the opportunities available across the globe by making use of the expertise of the global virtual teams. This chapter talks about a model for creation of global innovation model by global virtual teams who can design a product through the components of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT). Schelda Debowski (2006) rightly states that “Virtual Knowledge teams rely on Information technology to communicate” (p. 73).
Need For Global Innovation Model
Business enterprises need to move from a traditional approach to a new global development approach. This approach will take care of the entire product development process. The product development process is required to cover from the design through production to marketing the product. Business enterprises have to understand the value of sharing resources, reducing costs. and using advanced technology to gain competitive edge in the market. The knowledge management framework adds value to the dynamics of business enterprises. Further, it is useful in the present business environment where the processes are getting shortened through rapid technological advancements. The model recommended in this article provides an overview of the components of intellectual assets, advanced concepts of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) and global virtual teams. Further, it illustrates how these components facilitate in creating a global innovation model by a global virtual team. While explaining about the performance of geographically-dispersed cross–functional development teams, Deborah Sole and Amy Edmondson (2002) state that: “Some findings do indeed suggest that demographically-diverse groups outperform homogeneous groups” (p. 590).
Intellectual assets or intellectual capital are two words mentioned frequently in the present knowledge economy. The word capital or asset suffixed to intellectual is not used in strict accounting terminology. It is only a term referred to intangible assets. It may be noted that the meaning of both terms is the same. It is interesting to note the observation of Nick Bontis (2002) on intellectual capital: “The intellectual capital of an organization represents the wealth of ideas and ability to innovate that will determine the future of the organization” (p. 628).
The components of intangible assets are generally classified under four headings. They are: (1) human-centered assets, (2) infrastructure assets, (3) market assets, and (4) intellectual property. It is apt to recall the observation of Stephen E. Little (2002) on knowledge creation in global context: “The speed of technical and infrastructure changes in business practice together with a new understanding of the centrality of intangible assets to wealth creation has brought the silicon valley paradigm of innovation to prominence” (p. 369).
Special skills, knowledge, and entrepreneurial ability of the employees of a business enterprise fall under this heading.
Established business process, methods, and information systems in an organization will enable them to conduct their business smoothly.
These represent business enterprise brand image, distribution network, and the agreements such as licensing and collaboration.
Key Terms in this Chapter
Grid Computing: This involves the actual networking services and connections of a potentially-unlimited number of ubiquitous computing devices within a “Grid”.
Equipment Identity Register (EIR): This identifies devices in the GSM System.
Home Location Register (HLR): This takes care of storage for static information.
Authentication Center (AUC): This takes care of encryption and authentication.
Ubiquitous Computing: This term was coined by Mark Weiser, and means a “disappearing” everyplace computing environment which nobody will notice as being present. User will be able to use both local and remote services.
Normadic Computing: The computing environment moves along with the mobile user.
Gateway: This takes care of the transfer of voice and data.
Personal Digital Assistant (PDA): This is a small pen-input device designed for workers on the move. It allows voice and data communication.
Operation and Maintenance Center (OMC): This monitors and controls other network entities.
Pervasive Computing: This is a new dimension of personal computing that integrates mobile communication, ubiquitous embedded computer systems, consumer electronics, and the power of the Internet.
Visitor Location Register (VLR): This is a dynamic database for the users of mobile equipments.