Institut für Innovation Management

Language Selection

Breadcrumb Navigation


The dual role of IT capabilities in the development of digital products and services

Authors/Editors: Wiesböck, F.
Hess, T.
Spanjol, J.
Published: 2020
Type: Articles in Refereed Journals (International)
ISBN/ISSN: 0378-7206
Published by: Information and Management


Past research on the business value of information technologies (IT) has demonstrated the positive contribution of IT capabilities (IT-C) to product innovation performance. However, with the advent of digital technologies, a new kind of product innovations gained importance: digital product and service innovations (DPI). As a consequence of their idiosyncratic characteristics, the usefulness and validity of existing product innovation management concepts cannot be transferred to the context of DPI without further ado. Accordingly, this study reinvestigates the role of IT-C in the specific context of DPI. Therefore, we begin with a differentiation of DPI from traditional, non-digital product innovation. Then, we propose that IT-C affect the performance of DPI projects via two paths. First, based on the notion that DPI rely on the use of innovative IT, we assume that IT-C directly impact DPI performance. Second, following prior research that has argued that the performance contribution of IT-C is mediated by other organizational intermediaries, we assume that IT-C also indirectly contribute to DPI performance through their positive influence on other organizational capabilities. One such organizational capability that mediates the influence of IT-C on DPI performance is a firm’s DPI capabilities (DPI-C). DPI-C allow firms to deploy their digital resources for DPI purposes and, thus, are an important antecedent for DPI performance. To test our assumptions, we use partial least squares–structural equation modeling technique and analyze survey data collected from DPI projects across different industries in Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.

Related Links