Open innovation should be understood as networked innovation. It engages more innovators within and outside the company which results in innovation of higher complexity and competitiveness. For competitors to compete it is not enough to just copy the product, but they must also copy the innovation network, which is impossible.
Such networks should be built with internal departments, external experts, and different companies which can offer new skills, technologies, expertise, points of view. The more diverse yet relevant the innovators are, the more resilient and competitive the innovation will be.
As global competition is increasing it is imperative for companies to increase innovation complexity making them more resilient and competitive. Companies that continue with closed innovation will be easily copied, which means they will be investing in their competitors’ growth, not their own.
Today any single product can be copied, but a customer experience built by an open innovation network is impossible to copy.