Digital Innovation Units: Exploring Types, Linking Mechanisms and Evolution Strategies in Bimodal IT Setups

Research output: Contributions to collected editions/worksArticle in conference proceedingsResearchpeer-review


  • Jun-Patrick Raabe
  • Bettina Horlach
  • Paul Drews
  • Ingrid Schirmer
Due to rapidly changing customer needs, enterprises seek to innovate continuously. This includes the capability of discovering and developing digital innovations. As a nascent phenomenon, companies increasingly use digital innovation units (DIU) as fast and flexible accelerators. Although DIUs are established in practice, research on them and their role in bimodal IT setups is still sparse. Based on a qualitative cross-industry study in nine organizations, we identified two types of DIUs: Coaching & Screening (C&S) units and Center of Excellence (CoE) units. Furthermore, we describe two linking mechanisms between the DIUs and the main organization for ensuring impact and continuous innovation. Finally, we present four DIU evolution strategies, which can be employed by companies seeking to establish a DIU. Our study contributes to research on bimodal IT by developing a foundational understanding of how digital innovation activities are organized in DIUs to create impact on the main organization.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of WI 2020 : Entwicklungen, Chancen und Herausforderungen der Digitalisierung
EditorsN. Gronau, M. Heine, H. Krasnova, K. Pousttchi
Number of pages15
Place of PublicationBerlin
PublisherGITO Verlag
Publication date2020
Article number5
ISBN (Electronic)978-3-95545-335-0
Publication statusPublished - 2020
EventInternationale Tagung Wirtschaftsinformatik - WI 2020: Changing Landscapes - Shaping Digital Transformation and its Impact - Universität Potsdam, Potsdam, Germany
Duration: 09.03.202011.03.2020
Conference number: 15

Bibliographical note

ISBN 78-3-9554533-5-0?

    Research areas

  • Business informatics - Digital Innovation Units, Digital Innovation Labs, Bimodal IT, Digital Innovation Management