Design of MSPs: Constellation of Competition, Collaboration, and Control in an Ecosystem.

Muhammad Mubarak Faraz, Monika Petraite, Max von Zedtwitz

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperResearchpeer-review


Innovators usually own key resources in the research and development of new products and services. However, multi-sided platforms (MSPs) are a special type of digital ecosystems for “organizing collaboration and control – based on software, hardware, and services – that do not take ownership of the services for which they facilitate exchange through diverse inter-organizational interactions” (Reuver et al., 2018). This paper investigates how MSPs – under limited ownership – provide for collaborative innovation such that they are able to appropriate ensuing innovation results. Grounded in symbiotic interaction theory, we employ qualitative meta-analysis of 14 MSP cases to study the six cooperative behaviors of parasitism, commensalism, mutualism, neutralism, amensalism, and competition. These interactions are gauged against nine indicators compiled from literature. They include the various areas in which various participants of platform behave in a certain way either to give benefit or loss to platform or remains neutral. These nine indicators the increase or decrease the access to the resources, enables cost sharing or not, increase or decrease the control over platform, rise coordination issues, opportunity to capture rents , anti-trust issues, increases or decreases co-creation & innovation opportunities, and the issues of increasing or decreasing of switching costs. We propose several strategies that MSP can pursue to orchestrate the actors in their platforms for improving innovation outcome.
Original languageEnglish
Publication date2021
Number of pages14
Publication statusPublished - 2021
EventR&D Management Conference 2021: Innovation in an Era of Disruption - Online
Duration: 6 Jul 20218 Jul 2021


ConferenceR&D Management Conference 2021
Internet address


  • Digital multisided platforms
  • Collaboration
  • Symbiotic interaction
  • Competition
  • Agency theory
  • Qualitative meta-analysis

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