Business Models and the Dynamics of Supply and Demand for Standards

Business Models and the Dynamics of Supply and Demand for Standards

Richard Hawkins (University of Calgary, Canada)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-320-3.ch004
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With specific reference to information and communication technologies (ICT), this Chapter examines the structural relationship of various stakeholder groups to standardization, described both in terms of how different stakeholders demand and acquire standards and in terms of their corresponding motivations and/or capabilities to influence the standardization process. To this end, the Chapter will explore these dynamics in the context of ‘business models’, an emerging framework in the innovation context that describes commercial and organisational topologies for the supply and demand of goods and services from the perspective of how value is created and exchanged. Given the increasing synergy between many ICT standards and specific product and service environments, it will be shown how the business model is also potentially a useful device for understanding evolution in the supply and demand dynamics of standardization.
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1. Evolving Analytical Perspectives On Supply And Demand In Standardization Research

Social scientists have been studying standardization phenomena systematically for barely fifty years, the vast bulk of knowledge being produced only within the past twenty-five years. Much of the literature from before the mid-1980s now has the look of an ‘old school’, many of whose perspectives were still congruent with Whitworth’s 19th Century definition of standards as technical specifications that created the greatest common good with the minimum possible means; i.e. specifications whose adoption would confer homogenous advantages upon a heterogeneous group of producers (Whitworth 1882).

At first, standards were discussed almost exclusively within a very instrumental framework as a form of public goods with high inherent social welfare characteristics stemming primarily from their role in reducing technological variety (Kindleberger 1983). This perception was largely the result of a narrow focus upon ‘formal’ standards as developed using quasi-juridical stakeholder consultation processes and published in the public domain by nationally or internationally accredited standards development organisations (SDOs). Accordingly, the overwhelming emphasis of the first phases of standardization analysis was upon organization and process. The context was often highly normative, focussed upon how to ensure greater procedural efficiency in standards development and application within the conventional SDO framework (e.g. Reck 1956; Woodward 1965; Verman 1973; Sullivan 1983; Wallenstein 1990). This emphasis persists to this day although in a much wider and more subtle variety of guises (e.g. compare Cargill & Bohlin 2007 with de Vries 1999).

However, it was recognized very early on that over and above their technical functions, standards also have strategic and competitive dimensions in a variety of contexts ranging from the industrial politics of supply chains to international trade (Thompson 1954; Middleton 1973; Crane 1978; Hemenway 1978). During the 1980s a ‘new school’ emerged, which preserved some of the earlier instrumental focus, but greatly expanded the analytical spectrum and took a much more critical and empirically rigorous stance regarding the organization, function and purpose of standardization. During this transformation, many new perspectives opened up on the question of how demand for standards is issued and fulfilled.

In the earlier ‘instrumentalist’ tradition, the supply-and-demand issue was relatively straightforward. Demand would emerge whenever enough producers recognized that proprietary solutions were more a source of costs than advantage. Supply was a coordination issue; either selecting an existing practice or otherwise developing a new practice collectively. The ‘new school’ challenged these rather simplistic premises, shifting attention to the strategic role of standards in coordinating markets as well as technology. In this framework, standardization decisions become much more closely connected analytically to business decisions and the supply and demand dynamics of standardization became linked with those of the actual products and services in which standards were embedded. Indeed, in much of the more recent literature, standards themselves have been treated as products in their own right, or otherwise so synonymous with specific product environments as makes no difference (Egyedi 2001; Bekkers 2001; West 2003).

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Table of Contents
Kai Jakobs
Chapter 1
Martina Gerst, Eric Iversen, Kai Jakobs
The chapter argues that any distinction between “e-business” and “infrastructure” is artificial. It shows that the lower-level techncial standards... Sample PDF
An Integrated View of E-Business and the Underlying ICT Infrastructure
Chapter 2
Knut Blind, Stephan Gauch
The chapter provides an overview and subsequent analysis of the demand for e-government standards in the EU. It describes the requirements for... Sample PDF
The Demand for E-Government Standards
Chapter 3
Knut Blind
Against the background of theoretical typologies of service standards, a survey among European service companies addressed the question, in which... Sample PDF
A Taxonomy of Service Standards and a Modification for E-Business
Chapter 4
Richard Hawkins
With specific reference to information and communication technologies (ICT), this Chapter examines the structural relationship of various... Sample PDF
Business Models and the Dynamics of Supply and Demand for Standards
Chapter 5
Ian Graham, Raluca Bunduchi, Martina Gerst, Robin Williams
For RFID technology (radio frequency identification), the forms of the standardisation processes are co-evolving with the technology and are being... Sample PDF
Emergence of Standardisation Processes: Linkage with Users
Chapter 6
Kai Jakobs
This chapter briefly outlines a study that looked at potential links between ICT / e-business standards’ origins and their subsequent success in the... Sample PDF
Perceived Relation between ICT Standards' Sources and their Success in the Market
Chapter 7
Kai Jakobs, Jan Kritzner
The chapter tries to provide the information that potential standards-setters should consider when selecting a standards setting body (SSB). It... Sample PDF
How to Select the Best Platform for ICT Standards Development
Chapter 8
W. Lemstra, V. Hayes
In this chapter the authors explore and describe the role of the innovating firm in relation to the standards making process of Wireless-Local Area... Sample PDF
The Shaping of the IEEE 802.11 Standard: The Role of the Innovating Firm in the Case of Wi-Fi
Chapter 9
Tom McGuffog
In this chapter, the evolution of is described. The ever-changing balance between demand and supply is outlined. The conclusion is... Sample PDF
The Evolution of e.Business: Can Technology Supply Meet the Full Business Demand?
Chapter 10
Mingzhi Li, Kai Reimers
This chapter analyses and evaluates the Chinese government’s 3G policy of supporting the creation and implementation of the country’s indigenous... Sample PDF
China's Practice of Implementing a 3G Mobile Telecommunications Standard: A Transaction Costs Perspective
Chapter 11
Akio Tokuda
To develop automobiles that fulfill the criteria of “environment-friendliness” “advanced safety”, and“riding comfort”, coordination between ECUs... Sample PDF
International Framework for Collaboration between European and Japanese Standard Consortia: The Case of the Automotive LAN Protocol
Chapter 12
Tineke M. Egyedi
There is a continuous pressure for improvement in e-business. Increasing technical possibilities, new forms of outsourcing, the ongoing integration... Sample PDF
Between Supply and Demand: Coping with the Impact of Standards Change
Chapter 13
Mogens Kühn Pedersen, Vladislav V. Fomin, Henk J. de Vries
The fast growth in globalization stimulates the trend of open standards and challenges governments in devising policies for the national information... Sample PDF
Open Standards and Government Policy
Chapter 14
Ioannis P. Chochliouros, Anastasia S. Spiliopoulou, Tilemachos D. Doukoglou, Elpida Chochliourou
The European Authorities have promoted a specific and innovative framework for the use of electronic signatures, allowing the free flow of... Sample PDF
Developing Measures and Standards for the European Electronic Signatures Market
Chapter 15
Esther Ruiz Ben
In recent years, the ICT branch has experienced new internationalization impulses through the improvement of offshore practices. Particularly the... Sample PDF
Quality Standardization Patterns in ICT Offshore
Chapter 16
Manuel Mora, Ovsei Gelman, Rory O’Connor, Francisco Alvarez, Jorge Macías-Luévano
This chapter develops a descriptive-conceptual overview of the main models and standards of processes formulated in the systems engineering (SE)... Sample PDF
An Overview of Models and Standards of Processes in the SE, SwE, and IS Disciplines
Chapter 17
Martina Gerst, Kai Jakobs
Successful cooperation between large manufacturers and their suppliers is a crucial aspect, especially in the automotive industry. Such mutually... Sample PDF
E-Business Standardization in the Automotive Sector: Role and Situation of SMEs
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