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The World Health Innovation Summit (WHIS) platform for sustainable development. From the digital economy to knowledge in the healthcare sector

  • World Health Innovation Summit


The increasing development and availability of new technologies in all fields have led to the creation of new strategies and business models, meaning the way an organization creates, captures, and distributes value. Among these business models, platform companies or "platfirms" represent a compelling case, as they can allow knowledge and data sharing increasing the organization's value. The concept of value has changed in the last few years, from a purely economic or financial perspective to a value which must include the environment and the society, gathering together different stakeholders. The chapter aims at investigating the contribution of "platfirms" in a critical sector, that of healthcare, by analyzing the case of the World Health Innovation Summit (WHIS). Results show how "platfirms" like WHIS can contribute to the creation and spreading of knowledge, involving experts, professionals, and people, and reinvesting efforts, value, and money back to the community in a circular way. New technologies can so enhance the creation of new sustainable business models and solutions able to increase the social value, allowing so to move from a digital economy to knowledge.
The World Health Innovation Summit (WHIS) platform for sustainable
development. From the digital economy to knowledge in the
healthcare sector.
Gareth Presch, Francesca Dal Mas, Daniele Piccolo, Maksim Sinik and
Lorenzo Cobianchi
The increasing development and availability of new technologies in all fields have led to the creation
of new strategies and business models, meaning the way an organization creates, captures, and
distributes value. Among these business models, platform companies or "platfirms" represent a
compelling case, as they can allow knowledge and data sharing increasing the organization's value.
The concept of value has changed in the last few years, from a purely economic or financial perspective
to a value which must include the environment and the society, gathering together different
stakeholders. The chapter aims at investigating the contribution of "platfirms" in a critical sector, that
of healthcare, by analyzing the case of the World Health Innovation Summit (WHIS). Results show how
"platfirms" like WHIS can contribute to the creation and spreading of knowledge, involving experts,
professionals, and people, and reinvesting efforts, value, and money back to the community in a
circular way. New technologies can so enhance the creation of new sustainable business models and
solutions able to increase the social value, allowing so to move from a digital economy to knowledge.
Platfirms Business Models Sustainability Healthcare World Health Innovation Summit
3.1 Introduction and objective of the study
Several new technologies have been introduced in the last decade to the design, production, and sales
of products and services. From augmented and mixed reality to artificial intelligence, from robotics to
big data analytics, new technologies have enabled faster and more efficient innovation through the
creation of new products, services, processes, new ways of communication and opportunities to
increase the business (Bagnoli et al., 2019; Fletcher, 2015; Kagermann, 2015). Technology, in general,
is becoming cheaper and more accessible, and this leads to previously unknown possibilities, fostering
the progress, bringing opportunities for organizations to expand their horizons and knowledge (Dal
Mas et al., 2019; Toniolo et al., 2019). The introduction of such technologies foster the development
of new strategies (Amit and Zott, 2001; Schlegelmilch et al., 2003; Teece, 2010a) as well new business
models (Biloslavo et al., 2018; Nielsen et al., 2018; Teece, 2010b), meaning the way an organization
creates, captures, and distributes value (Osterwalder, 2004; Osterwalder et al., 2014).
One of the most successful business models enhanced by the introduction of such technologies is that
of the platform companies (Gawer and Cusumano, 2014) or so-called “Platfirm” (Troiani et al., 2016)
as new digitally-enabled business models. The phenomenon is so relevant that literature defined it as
a new industrial revolution. According to Troiani et al. (2016, p. 2) after the era of the machines that
have boosted physical power, the digital revolution has extended the power of human intelligence
and its ability to influence the surrounding environment. The organizational and business model of
platform-companies lies in fact at the heart of contemporary enterprises that are growing faster,
immediately expanding to a global level and revolutionizing the logics on which entire industries have
been based for decades.” One of the most known examples is Airbnb, which has extended its
economic value from nothing to over 24 billion $ in only nine years, more than any hotel chain in the
business, including Marriott and Hilton.
However, the concept of value has been evolving over time. While once it was limited to a dimension
of economic or financial value for the shareholders, it has now embraced a wider concept, which
includes the wealth and well-being for the society and the environment (Dal Mas, 2019; Edvinsson et
al., 2006; Grafstrom and Edvinsson, 1996; Massaro et al., 2018). Sustainability has hence become a
central topic in a modern society which is facing global climate problems, poverty, pollution, and a
lack of basic healthcare services in several areas of the planet. In 2015, the United Nations established
the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as the commitment that all countries must meet. The
SDGs call for massive economic and social changes that allow to run businesses and satisfy the needs
of consumers taking sustainability into the picture. This includes a lower consumption of resources,
especially the non-renewable ones, the respect for nature and earth, and the attention towards social
issues such as equality and inclusion. These new perspectives call for new sustainable business models
(Boons and Lüdeke-Freund, 2013; Seelos and Mair, 2005, 2007; Tukker, 2004). Zott et al. (2011) state
how adopting a sustainable business model can help to business to create value not only for customers
but also for other stakeholders, society, and the natural environment. The value is so captured and
distributed across a broad set of stakeholders. The new technologies can be seen as powerful allies to
sustainable business models to reach the goal, by helping to provide sustainable products, services,
as well as transparent and sustainable supply chains (Linton et al., 2007; Seuring and Müller, 2008).
Sustainability is taking advantage of the platfirm business thanks to the so-called cross-side network
effect, that can help to create value gathering people together to foster and share ideas (Ruutu et al.,
2017). One of the most known examples is Wikipedia, where people can contribute to the general
knowledge of the society by creating and double-checking contents that are freely available to
everyone, making knowledge quickly accessible free-of-charge even to the poorest countries of the
world. The required characteristics to provide a successful platfirm strategy are to attract people,
facilitate the exchange of knowledge among them, allowing the recombination of knowledge-creating
a feedback loop where the users that find interesting knowledge remain into the stay and contribute
Interesting enough, those business models have been proved to be very successful in the healthcare
sector. An example is the Health Information Exchange (HIE) platform, which provides the capability
to electronically share clinical information among different health care information systems. HIE aims
to facilitate the access and the retrieval of clinical data to provide safer and more timely, efficient,
effective, and equitable patient-centered care (Moore et al., 2012; Yaraghi et al., 2015). One more
example is Hospitalrun
, an open-access platform founded in 2012 that offers free downloadable
software for hospital management, to provide the most modern hospital information system to the
less-resourced environments, especially those in the less developing countries. Hospitalrun, which is
being used by thousands of hospitals and clinics in countries including Kenya, Nigeria, and India was
initially established with the cooperation of C.U.R.E. clinics
, a non-profit, humanitarian relief
organization. Therefore, platfirms business models have been proven to be an interesting option to
develop sustainable models, especially in the healthcare sector.
This chapter aims to contribute to this research stream presenting the case of World Health Innovation
Summit (WHIS)
, a preventive healthcare platform developed with the aim of empowering people to
improve their health and well-being by facilitating community engagement generating value shared.
3.2 The WHIS project
The WHIS project was born in 2015 by Gareth Presch, a healthcare manager with 20 years of
experience working in the sector in Ireland and the UK. During his job in Ehealth and District Nursing
in Cumbria, UK, Gareth noticed the massive pressures on the system and the high level of staff
turnover due to these increased pressures. People were constantly leaving due to high stress and
other factors. Delivering high-quality patient-centered care can not be met if the organizations are
continuously losing staff. The organization would also struggle to attract staff if the values were not
right. Cumbria has had problems recruiting and retaining staff, that are well-publicized.
Gareth started from the concept that people attract people, so he came up with the idea of a
community for patients, clinicians, managers, voluntary sector, education and the business
community, which was later called "the World Health Innovation Summit" (WHIS) to attract thought
leaders to Cumbria. The idea was to support these leaders to disseminate their knowledge through
the platform and peer-reviewed journals, and that would help attract staff while showcasing the
region as a great place to live, work, and invest.
However, very quickly after the first event, Gareth and his staff realized there was more to it. The
technology could help the idea evolve from a simple community to a platform to provide opportunities
to support people improve their health and well-being (prevention) that could be applied to any
healthcare economy in the world.
Aims and scope
WHIS is aiming to empower people to improve their health and well-being while addressing the
challenges faced by the health service. Those challenges lie in an aging population (Börsch-Supan et
al., 2005), rising levels of obesity, and other lifestyle diseases (Wilkinson and Pickett, 2006), all set
against an 18 million workers shortfall in healthcare staff (Limb, 2016).
The idea is that there are opportunities to create a new preventative model that supports people’s
health and well-being through the WHIS platform, through effective community engagement and
sharing knowledge that delivers well-being for the citizens while creating new opportunities and
ecosystems to support the implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, generating
value shared that can be recycled and used to regenerate existing and new communities worldwide.
The platform allows everyone to collaborate and break the silo-working through system thinking:
linear to circular, dis-connection to interconnectedness, silos to emergence, parts to wholes, analysis
to synthesis, and from isolation to relationships. WHIS is the answer to this: a platform for
collaboration with a focus on preventative healthcare. Indeed, according to the Institute for Global
Health Sciences of the University of California - San Francisco (Duff-Brown, 2017), diseases like obesity,
cancer, etc. could cost 47 Trillion Dollars by 2030 despite the advancement of research in integrated
care, including the oncological ones (Cobianchi et al., 2016; Peloso et al., 2017; Zhang et al., 2019).
WHIS provides the opportunity to bring together people from many different industries, whose new
ideas and different perspectives create new opportunities and value through knowledge transfer.
WHIS plans to become the world’s leading platform for health and well-being as it can be shared and
scaled to support any community and bring value. WHIS has followers and leaders in several countries
around the world, such as UK, Ireland, UAE, Thailand, Nigeria, Kenya, Switzerland, the United States,
to name a few. WHIS are partners with United Nations Global Sustainable Index Institute, the
foundation leading the implementation of the 17 UN sustainable development goals in cities around
the world.
The primary value of WHIS is trust, with the motto “Trust is the Oil of the Future.” WHIS grows by
attracting like-minded individuals who understand that what WHIS does is for the common good,
combining thought and emotional leadership. WHIS provides the methodology and the value
proposition, while the actors take ownership and generate the income streams locally, nationally and
Knowledge sharing and knowledge recombination
The WHIS model is based on combining human, social, and structural capital (Edvinsson et al., 2005;
Edvinsson and Malone, 1997; Grafstrom and Edvinsson, 1996), creating a knowledge transfer platform
that exists to support the health economies around the world. The WHIS platform works around five
main pillars: WHISKids, WHISatwork, WHISSeniors, WHISGreen, WHISTech. Every WHIS pillar is driven
by a specific value proposition that supports knowledge transfer to benefit people’s health and well-
being in the specific area. The platform aims are connecting people, inspiring and influencing positive
change. WHIS provides a platform to develop new ideas, prototype at a local, national, or international
level. From pregnancy, creative arts, and design thinking new models and ideas that add community
value can be developed through the platform.
Building a community focused on health issues, the platform makes knowledge and ideas globally
scaleable. All the social prescribing programs that are already on the platform can be shared
everywhere in the world. WHIS can take them from being a local initiative to having worldwide reach.
The WHIS team has held summits and activities right across the UK (Newcastle, Carlisle, Nottingham,
Blackpool, Manchester, Birmingham, Leicester, ...), Thailand and Greece. The programmes and
wellness activities (wellness retreats) have been tested in Cumbria. Additionally, to create
engagement, WHIS has launched a magazine (WHISInspire), and WHISTalks, with various other
initiatives to support people’s health and well-being in development.
The platform can be defined as a social business, aiming to generate income streams to then reinvest
money back into local communities (Porter and Kramer, 2006). Once overheads are covered, the
profits are reinvested back into the community. The objectives are to improve people’s health and
wellbeing while creating a new ecosystem through a sharing and circular economy. An independent
report has demonstrated that every £1 invested in the activities will generate £36 in terms of social
return on investment back to the local community.
Successful case studies
One of WHIS’ most success stories has been WHISkids, a program for school children that focuses
predominantly on mental health and well-being. From the work in Cumbria and teaming up with a
local innovative program for all ages, My Way Code, WHIS codeveloped a primary schools program
which helps children aged 4-11 years understand emotions and physical symptoms and what they can
choose to do to be more healthy mentally and physically. A couple of thousand children have gone
through the programme in Cumbria over the last couple of years. WHIS takes accountability into high
consideration, and always measures its work. The results of WHISkids are impressive. The children
have so far self-reported the distance traveled in their understanding of their mental health and
wellbeing as being increased by an average of 20%. Middlesbrough Football Club is soon going to apply
the WHISkids methodology to football, and more sports and clubs are on the agenda (rugby, cricket,
golf, ...). WHISkids can be seen as an example of knowledge sharing and codesign with local partners
to bring innovative solutions at scale.
Other programmes developed by WHIS to support people are: WHISatwork (stress management in
the workplace, ...), WHISSeniors (falls prevention, quality of life, loneliness, ...) WHISTech (artificial
intelligence, robotics, virtual reality, ...) and WHISGreen (energy, waste, and water). New programmes
are being developed, including a Cancer Wellbeing programme, Creative Arts, Design Thinking, and a
Global Pregnancy Wellbeing Programme. All programmes are based on health education, health
promotion, and disease prevention.
These programmes and services will have a positive effect on people and communities over the short,
medium, and long term and this is all down to the WHIS platform.
WHIS and the UN SDGs
In September 2015, 193 heads of state pledged their commitment to implement the 17 Sustainable
Development Goals at the United Nations. The UNGSII FOUNDATION was created to assist and
accelerate the implementation process, with the mission to ensure that the world reaches its goal, at
the latest, by 2030. WHIS is a partner with UNGSII for the SDG 25 + 5 Cities Leadership platform
. This
is an ambitious programme conceived by the UN Director General Michael Moller and Heildelberg
Mayor Prof Eckhart Wurzner. The project has identified 25 cities and 5 indigenous communities from
around the world to become lighthouses, where experts in their field will come together and help
those cities deliver the SDGs by 2030.
WHIS is working on the SDG 3 "Good health and well-being", supporting the 25 cities working with the
institutions, with the universities, and with the city councils to support them and see what can be
done to implement the SDGs. WHIS disseminates information about healthy living and welcomes any
support and knowledge sharing, merging, for instance, post-operatory recovery with physical activities
and, for example, park walk (Ireland et al., 2019).
In addition to the 25 cities, WHIS is also setting up what is being called Hubs, cities that will become
incubators for new ideas and new programmes that can be prototyped, proven and then scaled to the
25 Cities. WHIS plans to bring in leading experts to work on creating these solutions, to be
subsequently tested out. As part of that, WHIS is also working on the creation of the next generation
health and well-being centers, a mix of clinical, physical, and emotional well-being services.
3.3 Discussion and conclusion
In concluding our book chapter, we would like to start from the premise that inspired this work. New
technologies have brought the development of a knowledge economy. Knowledge is a key resource,
and it is peculiar since it does not consume resources with its use. Rather, the opposite occurs, it
increases its value the more it is used.
The case of WHIS represents an interesting example in the healthcare sector, one of the most
influenced by new technologies and continuous innovation and research (Christensen et al., 2000;
Currie and Guah, 2007; Iacopino et al., 2018; Lucas, 2015; Mascia and Di Vincenzo, 2011; Muzio and
Faulconbridge, 2013). The platform aims to develop new programmes in the healthcare and well-being
field, gathering together the most brilliant minds in the area, allowing medical doctors, nurses,
educators, psychologists, managers, and other experts to share their ideas and knowledge through
the web and on the ground. The galaxy of ideas enables the development of programmes devoted to
specific users (school-aged children, older people, mothers-to-be, cancer patients to mention a few)
that can be directly prototyped and tested into communities and cities, but also in hospitals, clinics,
hospices, schools, and any other organization.
The more the programmes are used, the more data and cases are collected, and the process leads to
a continuous improvement of the models and protocols. New and meaningful jobs can be created and
healthcare professionals and experts that are dealing with new cases allow the accumulation of new
knowledge, to further refine the programmes. New ideas can be generated, from innovative ways to
recover from surgery to older adults' wellness programs, from pregnancy and breastfeeding to raising
public awareness towards organ donation.
Best practices, as well as successful programs like WHISkids, can be exported to other countries and
cities, involving more professionals and users. Again, the more the protocol is used, the more it can
be refined, increasing its impact and the overall value of the process and leading to new opportunities
(for instance, refined educational programmes or classes to be implemented into schools, universities,
or hospitals). Innovation and ideas can come from everywhere, and platforms like WHIS allow those
ideas to be prototyped, shared, create training and employment and scaled in a successful way.
The platform or "platfirm” allows first to attract talents that can share ideas, incorporate them in new
business models that can be spread all over the world through community engagement that can be
shared digitally. Moreover, the use of a social business model for WHIS allows the development of a
broader concept of value. Not only does the value generated by the community applying for the
projects return at a greater value in terms of impact and well-being, but the overall profit realized by
the platform is reinvested, creating an endless virtuous circle. WHIS represents a positive example of
a cross-side effect where buyers, producers, professionals, and social actors operate together to find
new solutions. Technology allows the spreading and increasing of knowledge at no extra cost, with a
turbo effect on its impact.
In concluding our work, we want to highlight how new technologies can allow the development of
new solutions and new ways of increasing the social value thanks to the knowledge economy,
especially in critical sectors like healthcare. The future of business will be aligned to social value as we
can move from the digital economy to knowledge.
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Research”, Journal of Management, Vol. 37 No. 4, pp. 10191042.
... An analysis by World Economic Forum of more than 65 digital initiatives suggests that the combined valueto society and industryof digital transformation across industries is upwards of $100 trillion over the next 10 years. 2 While past research has unpacked the fundamental change processes enabled by digital technologies in the corporate sector (Elia et al., 2020;Rippa and Secundo, 2019), a recent emerging group of research, to which this special issue belongs, are calling for research on the opportunities of the fundamental changes of institutions and organizations operating in the healthcare sector (Yoo et al., 2010;Cohen et al., 2017;Ramaswamy and Ozcan, 2018;Wang et al., 2020). Technology offers unknown possibilities to healthcare that need to be unpacked (Presch et al., 2020) such as empowering a patient-centric approach, increasing operational efficiency, or supporting workflow practices (Kraus et al., 2021). Earlier studies on digital transformation in healthcare analyzed how blockchain, robots, 3D printing, artificial intelligence and other digital technologies have been implemented, what patented inventions they generated and what are their intended and unintended benefits and consequences (Bardhan et al., 2020;Ting et al., 2020;Wang et al., 2020;Massaro, 2021). ...
... Our second contribution is to the nascent literature on the use of patient feedback platform (James et al., 2017). Platforms in general are identified as a source of innovations, creating knowledge and positive management changes coupled with health economies (Presch et al., 2020;Spanò et al.;2021). Our study opens the scope to organizational point of view and healthcare process management (Basile et al., 2022). ...
... Third, as Presch et al. (2020) argued, technology offers unknown possibilities to healthcare that need to be explored. We have studied the use of feedback platforms for hospitals, but did not explore the uses of these feedback platforms for other stakeholders. ...
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The objective of this study is to explore new opportunities for hospitals to use patient feedback platforms (i.e., digital platforms on which patients express their opinions on their care journeys). Patient feedback platforms generate an ever-expanding amount of data on patient experience of care that is currently unused by most hospital or their business intelligence unit. We used the methodological approach of netnography on the negative feedback received by one hospital combined with interviews to identify the potential value of the data generated by the patient feedback platform. The main findings are that a digital feedback platform serves as a source of data to indicate: (1)Where to act (by localizing the negative comments), (2) On what to act (what thematic provides satisfaction and therefore is to be kept; or causes dissatisfaction and thus is to be improved), and (3) How to innovate (ideas about new practices to implement). It becomes evident that the platforms are developing a service to help hospitals make sense of this raw data and that a hospital can use patient feedback from other hospitals to improve their own practices. The first implication of our results is that patient feedback platforms generate a complementary type of feedback (i.e. based on patient perception and not empirical fact), as well as a source of data (i.e., patients' external spontaneous feedback and not internally controlled survey feedback) for the Business Intelligence unit engaged in the transformation of the hospital towards patient-centered care. The second implication is that these platforms create a feedback network effect (i.e. A patient's feedback can be used by hospitals other than the focal hospital concerned by that feedback, therefore increasing the overall value of the platform). The third implication is that digital transformation is enabled not only by data generation on the platform but also by data analysis services provided by the third party that runs the platform.
... In addition, digitality highlights an ability to collect, store, transfer and even generate data and knowledge in novel ways, which might have unique implications in the health care setting (see, e.g. Blaschke et al., 2019;Presch et al., 2020;Ramaswamy and Ozcan, 2018;Secundo et al., 2019;Sousa et al., 2019). Floerecke et al. (2020) suggested that the current literature does not provide sufficient guidance for the 'modeling procedure' of the ecosystem. ...
... We claim that digital health platforms can offer patients and other stakeholders many benefits. For example, these platforms enable the creation and spreading of knowledge by integrating and involving patients and their caretakers in a collaborative system that facilitates the development of new diagnostic and health care methods (Presch et al., 2020). Platforms can improve the effectiveness of treatment by better monitoring the progression of the disease, the patient's condition and the effectiveness of the medication. ...
... From a societal and managerial perspective, there are many implications related to digital health platforms. While offering many new means of knowledge content sharing, involving patients and caretakers in value co-creation and providing enhanced on-time diagnostics with the help of the digital health platform ecosystem (Presch et al., 2020), the impact of medical treatments could be improved. This would lead to better health resource coordination (Sousa et al., 2019), providing new insights into decision-making processes in health care. ...
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This study investigates how a digital health care platform ecosystem and its essential core elements can be constructed considering specific characteristics of health care. A single case study of an ecosystem planned for patients with Parkinson's disease was conducted following a constructive research approach. The study reveals that the keystones for digital platform ecosystem design for health care purposes are as follows: 1) a focus on multi-sided mutual value propositions as a starting point for the design process; 2) understanding the technological core of the platform, including artefacts, interfaces and infrastructure; 3) understanding the actor layer, including actor resources, roles, positions and mutual interactions; and 4) understanding environmental influences in the form of data-related issues, prevailing institutions, practices and regulation. Several recommendations are offered to consider in designing the digital health care platform ecosystem. Managerially, this understanding could facilitate the development of new means of diagnostics, impactful and just-in-time care, functioning data collection and resource coordination in health care.
... For instance, digital technologies such as social media e.g., Twitter and WeChat La Torre et al., 2022;Wang et al., 2020); can enhance public health education and communication efforts (Garcia Vazquez et al., 2020;Shu Wei Ting et al., 2020). New operating robots and tools allow surgery to be safer and more efficiently planned, leading to a better outcome for all stakeholders, from the patient to the operator (surgeon), from the hospital or clinic to the whole society (Dal Mas, Piccolo, et al., 2020;Steil et al., 2019). Automation and three-dimensional printing are making available new devices for patient care; big data allow the collection of valuable information that can be used both for training new physicians and for improving existing healthcare techniques for COVID-19, such as performing modelling studies of viral activities and for guiding individual country healthcare policymakers to enhance effective management of the pandemic (Balch et al., 2022;Dal Mas et al., 2022). ...
... Deepening the healthcare service or medical specialities analyzed, notably, most papers (18) deal with e-health and telemedicine. For example, Hermes et al. (2020) discuss the potential of the so-called "platfirms" (namely, platform-based firms) (Presch et al., 2020) and their impact on the modern healthcare scenario. Mrabet et al. (2020) deepen the topic of IoT sensors and their potential vulnerability. ...
Digital transformation in healthcare is a strategic field for both scholars and practitioners. In this study, we attempted to analyze the current state of the art about the pervasive role of digital technologies in healthcare and to identify how the COVID-19 pandemic forced all the systems to disruptively adopt novel digital technologies, which affected both management and business sides. To elucidate the role of digital technologies in healthcare, we performed a structured literature review about the state of the art of digital transformation in healthcare to identify how the healthcare sector is undergoing a renaissance due to the pandemic. Our findings show that future research falls into three promising areas: (a) digital health care services enabled by digital technologies, (b) stakeholders' engagement through digital technologies for health care services, and (c) value impact generated by the digital transformation for healthcare stakeholders. We link these areas together, showing how the different digital technologies (smart health technologies, data-enabled and data collection technologies, Industry 4.0 tools and technologies, cognitive technologies, and drug & disease technologies) lead to the provisions of digital services, operational efficiencies, and value creation in the healthcare system. We conclude the article by suggesting various directions for future research and implications for management and practice.
... Including entrepreneurs from various sectors enhances the potential for generalizing the findings. Additionally, the economic challenges these nations face, such as recession and increasing unemployment rates, make exploring knowledge development particularly intriguing (Presch et al., 2020). By comparing students and young entrepreneurs, valuable insights can be gained regarding the most effective approaches for improving skills awareness. ...
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Purpose The research aims to investigate the changing skills required for international entrepreneurship (IE) and the awareness of these skills among students and professionals in four European countries. The study intends to investigate students' and professionals' perceptions of entrepreneurial skills and the potential for educational programs to improve their awareness of these skills. Design/methodology/approach This quantitative cross-sectional analysis uses an online questionnaire to collect data from 75 university students and 75 entrepreneurs in four European countries. Several tests validate the data, and Cronbach's alpha succeeded in measuring internal consistency. The results showed differences in the perception of skills between students and entrepreneurs. Findings Entrepreneurs had developed all competencies except access to finance, while students had lower perceptions of their skills, except for collaboration. Students needed to improve significantly in access to finance, business planning, financial skills, knowledge of the labour market and digital marketing. Practitioners only required significant improvement in access to finance and digital marketing. Practical implications Education programs should fit the needs of different groups: a broader program for students and more specific courses on access to finance and digital marketing for practitioners. Originality/value The present research's original feature highlights the need to monitor and adapt to the constantly changing skills for IE and the importance of hard and soft skills. The paper provides insights into the subject's awareness and perceived standard, with reflections for policymakers and practitioners.
... Il progetto "VCare" mira a fornire una soluzione di coaching intelligente basata sulla logica dei percorsi assistenziali personalizzati per contrastare l'invecchiamento e supportare la popolazione in età avanzata (EHTEL, 2022b). Il progetto "OpenDei" è finalizzato all'utilizzo di piattaforme digitali aperte per lo scambio sinergico di informazioni e dati in ambito sanitario (EHTEL, 2022c;Presch et al., 2020). ...
Introduction: In recent years, and even more following the need for social distancing generated by the global COVID-19 pandemic, e-health has become an increasingly widespread reality in clinical practice, especially for those clinicians operating in the front-line, like nurses. Its growing importance has been followed by increasing attention both by the literature as well as in the generation of specific rules aimed at regulating the phenomenon. Methods: A regulatory review of the literature aims to outline the current regulatory framework relating to telemedicine. Telemedicine, especially in a pandemic context, calls for regulation that runs parallel to the rapid evolution of the phenomenon itself. The paper traces the European, Italian, and Regional legislation, focusing then on a practical experience of telemedicine, called Doctor @ Home, active at the IRCCS National Cancer Center in Aviano (Italy). Discussion: First, the need for regulatory harmonization emerges. Secondly, the potential of co-production and co-learning processes for healthcare professionals and patients arises to adapt to the outpatient needs of patients in a post-pandemic "new normal," exploiting the new technological tools made available by the National Health Service.
... Consider technologies as they change over time, the chosen framework should be flexible and adaptable to add or modify existing solutions (Gordon et al., 2017). e. Making good use of data, using data analytics (Sousa, 2019), can lead to great value (Dal Mas, Piccolo, et al., 2019;Dal Mas, Piccolo and Ruzza, 2020;Dal Mas, Piccolo, Edvinsson, et al., 2020;Presch et al., 2020). The digital hospital of the future should create a strong system-wide data infrastructure (Gordon et al., 2017). ...
... The United Nation Sustainable Development Goal number 17 addresses explicitly the respect of human and ethical principles in the collection and use of statistics. 2 Sustainability is one of the most relevant topics in today's business scenario, and an increasing number of organisations worldwide are trying to incorporate it within their corporate strategies . The first focus was mainly about developing new sustainable products or services or caring about the environmental impact of the production, even trying to implement new sustainable business models (Cosenz et al., 2020;Dal Mas et al., 2020b;Massaro et al., 2020b;Presch et al., 2020). More recently, a new approach has emerged, including people's well-being in the picture (Kaciak and Welsh, 2020;Massaro et al., 2020a). ...
... Digitalization has revolutionized the way industry works [32]. Digital platforms have created a new method of operation for companies and organizations in the "business ecosystem" [33], leading to the constant iteration and growth of industry value networks [34]. ...
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Green technological innovation is one of the endogenous drivers of green economic growth, and digitalization can promote green economic development in the form of industrial empowerment. The interactive relationship and the degree of influence between digitalization, technological innovation, and green economic development is thus an urgent issue to be addressed. Based on the panel data of 30 Chinese provinces from 2011 to 2019, we measured digitalization, technological innovation, and green economic development for the first time using the entropy method and included them in the same analytical framework by constructing a PVAR model to empirically test their interrelationship and degree of influence. Our findings suggest that: (1) There is an inertial development and self-reinforcing mechanism among the three variables. (2) The impact of digitalization on green economic development has a positive promotion effect, while the impact of technological innovation on green economic development is not significant. (3) The impact of green economic development on technological innovation has a positive promotion effect in the short term, but this effect gradually declines and tends to zero in the long term. Finally, based on the findings, several practical suggestions are made.
... Digital technologies have a revolutionary effect on the way industries operate [11] introduced the concept of "Industry 4.0" or the "smart factory" [25]. Digital platforms have created a new way for companies and organizations to operate in a "business ecosystem" [36]. ...
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Few cancer drugs or their indications achieved survival benefit in subsequent trials during postmarket period after approval based on surrogate endpoints. This causes a concern of using surrogate endpoints instead of overall survival (OS) as the primary endpoint for trial design, implementation and regulation approval. We conducted a systematic review to summarize the findings from published meta-analyses which have evaluated endpoint surrogacy for OS in oncological randomized controlled trials (RCTs) with immunotherapies. After searching articles indexed in PubMed prior to 24 February 2019, we identified a total of 11 meta-analyses for advanced multiple tumors, non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), urothelial carcinoma, renal cell carcinoma, melanoma; most (91%; 10/11) focused on immune checkpoint inhibitors. Although the evaluation criteria adopted by these meta-analyses for validating endpoint surrogacy were not consistent (ranging from R 2 ≥0.60 to R 2 ≥0.80), the results were consistent. Few studies show an association between OS and progression-free survival (PFS)/objective response rate (ORR) that met the lowest evaluation criteria (R 2 ≥0.60), based on treatment effects (8%; 2/26 indications) or absolute results from experimental arm (0%; 0/11 indications). However, the association between OS and 1-year survival rate met the lowest criteria based on both the trial-level results (4/4 indications) and the arm-level results (5/5 indications). In lieu of this finding, we are supportive of an alternative endpoint, e.g., 1-year survival rate, rather than the more conventional choices PFS and ORR, as promising surrogate endpoint for OS in immunotherapy RCTs. We encourage further investigation on endpoint surrogacy based on the same or different settings, especially an assessment on survival rate at milestone time (e.g., 1-year), which has been demonstrated valuable for predicting OS in meta-analyses.
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Introduction Brunner's gland hamartoma (BGH) is an infrequently encountered, benign, polypoid proliferation of Brunner's glands. Usually these lesions are asymptomatic, just only occasionally presenting with duodenal obstruction or bleeding signs and mimicking a tumoral lesion. Case presentation A 72-year-old male, referred for recurrent vomiting and epigastralgia, was investigated and all preoperative findings were suggestive of a tumour of the duodenum. During the scheduled pancreaticoduodenectomy a mass, resultant to a polyp, was palpatory felt inside the duodenum and then successfully and completely resected through a duodenotomy avoiding surgical overtreatment and connected postoperative morbidities. Histological analysis showed hyperplasia of Brunner's glands correspondent to a Brunner's gland hamartoma. BGH was undiagnosed before surgery, due to its particular sub-mucosal growth simulating an expanding process starting from the duodenum, and secondly due to unsuccessful biopsies performed during endoscopic procedure. Conclusion BGH is a rare lesion featuring, when symptomatic, obstructive or bleeding symptoms. Surgical treatment represents the gold standard approach in case of lesions that are technically impossible to remove endoscopically or in case of an undiagnosed lesion. Herein, we report a case of a patient presenting with a duodenal lesion mimicking, in all preoperative findings, a tumour of the duodenum. Duodenotomy and resection of the BGH provided a definitive cure avoiding surgical overtreatment. An intraoperative deep analysis of all surgical cases still remain crucial for a right therapeutic choice even in a new era for surgical technology. For similar intraoperative findings we recommend this technique.
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Digital service platforms are becoming widespread in all areas of society. One risk scenario in platform development is related to the fragmentation of development efforts and the failure to achieve a critical mass of platform users, while a second risk scenario is related to a winner-take-all situation in which one platform firm achieves a monopoly position in the market. We develop a system dynamics model of platform development that includes two competing platforms, and use the model to simulate various development paths by varying different factors that affect how resources accumulate to the platforms. Our simulation results show that delays in users' decision making can increase the likelihood of achieving critical mass. In addition, open interfaces and data transferability between platforms can accelerate platform adoption and decrease the likelihood of a winner-take-all situation. The simulation results also reveal more nuanced development paths than simple S-shaped growth because of delays in platform development and different cross-side network effects to end users and service providers.
This chapter aims to shed light on the pivotal role played by artificial intelligence (AI) in supporting sustainable business models’ development.
The objective of this article is to analyze the impact of Industry 4.0 on business models considering technological change as a driver of strategic innovation. The research aims to provide the key to interpreting a process of innovation that, starting from the technological transformation, translates it into a broader change of business models. A structured literature review has been developed analyzing 144 sources divided into scientific papers, reports from consultancy firms and institutional reports. This method identified the importance given by the literature to the technologies and their impact on the building blocks of the business model. The research has led to the identification of 12 business models that can represent a framework to interpret the Industry 4.0 phenomenon strategically. A questionnaire analysis of a sample of 111 companies based in Italy allowed us to compare the results of theoretical research with the perceptions of Italian entrepreneurs.
The purpose of this chapter is to investigate how intellectual capital (IC) and sustainability influence each other in practitioners’ perspective. Three steps methodology was applied to reach this purpose. First, the study employs a text mining analysis of 1651 posts published by practitioners in one of the leading sources of sustainability: the website Concepts extracted from the posts are then analyzed using a factor analysis to summarize them within themes. Finally, themes are analyzed to identify how IC and sustainability influence each other using a correlation analysis. Results show that IC and sustainability are complex topics. Practitioners discuss 17 main themes split into Financial (also known as Economic), Social and Environmental sustainability. The three main components of IC: human capital, relational capital and structural capital connect with most of these themes proving that IC and sustainability influence each other.
Walking is widely accepted as a safe and effective method of promoting rehabilitation and a return to physical activity after a cancer diagnosis. Little research has considered the therapeutic qualities of landscape in relation to understanding women's recovery from breast cancer, and no study has considered the supportive and therapeutic benefits that walking groups might contribute to their wellbeing. Through a study of a volunteer-led walking group intervention for women living with and beyond breast cancer (Best Foot Forward) we address this gap. A mixed-methods design was used including questionnaires with walkers (n = 35) and walk leaders (n = 13); telephone interviews with walkers (n = 4) and walk leaders (n = 9); and walking interviews conducted outdoors and on the move with walkers (n = 15) and walk leaders (n = 4). Questionnaires were analysed descriptively. Interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed verbatim, and analysed thematically. Our study found that the combination of walking and talking enabled conversations to roam freely between topics and individuals, encouraging everyday and cancer-related conversation that created a form of 'shoulder-to-shoulder support' that might not occur in sedentary supportive care settings. Walking interviews pointed to three facets of the outdoor landscape - as un/natural, dis/placed and im/mobile - that walkers felt imbued it with therapeutic qualities. 'Shoulder-to-shoulder support' was therefore found to be contingent on the therapeutic assemblage of place, walk and talk. Thus, beyond the physical benefits that walking brings, it is the complex assemblage of walking and talking in combination with the fluid navigation between multiple spaces that mobilises a therapeutic assemblage that promotes wellbeing in people living with and beyond breast cancer.
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to investigate the relationship between intellectual capital (IC) and sustainability using practitioners’ perspectives and by developing an analysis of comments and practices published in 1,651 blog posts in one of the leading sources of sustainability research: Design/methodology/approach A total of 1,651 posts, containing more than 1.5 million words, published by experts in the field of sustainability are analysed using Leximancer and content analysis. Findings The results reveal IC and sustainability to be complex topics under active discussion by practitioners, and several links to the IC literature are identified and compared. The findings focus on the managerial practices applied by leading companies, as discussed by practitioners, that show IC and sustainability influence each other in answering a plurality of demands or logics. Research limitations/implications First, the authors identify the need to study the managerial practices proposed by practitioners, rather than their company reports. Second, the authors propose developing a trading zone for IC researchers and practitioners. Third, the authors reflect on the role of new communication tools, such as integrated reporting, to connect IC and sustainability. Finally, the authors conclude that the relationship between IC and sustainability could benefit from a fifth stage of IC research that considers justifications of the worth of IC and sustainability practices. Originality/value The paper is novel because it addresses concerns about the relationship between IC and sustainability by examining messages posted by practitioners, rather than examining company disclosures. This leads to an understanding of the impact of practices rather than the desires motivating practice. The results support the view that it is time to remove the boundaries of IC research and work towards reconciling the worth of IC to different people in different contexts. The authors argue that practitioners require scholars to reduce the ambiguity between IC and its expected results. This would open the door to a potentially productive way of understanding IC and the complexity of economic, social, and environmental value. In short, researchers should change their research questions from, “What is IC worth to investors, customers, society, and the environment?” to “Is managing IC a worthwhile endeavour?”
Despite business models having been discussed thoroughly by academics there are still some epistemological and ontological issues that have yet to be resolved. Business models seem to have stalled at the technological era and have not fully engaged with the era of sustainability. The purpose of our paper is to add a new lens and richness to sustainable business model research by building on the need for more interdisciplinary approaches. This paper applies an eco-critical approach to analyse the 20 most often cited business model frameworks. We explore the conventional understanding of the business models based on the language applied and reflect on gaps in the current perspectives of sustainability. The analysis shows that existing business model frameworks exclude natural and social aspects of organisational environment from the discussion and tend to neglect the interrelationships between economic and not-economic actors as well as the intertemporal trade-offs. Based on the results of the analysis we propose a new sustainable business model framework named “Value Triangle”, which explicitly includes as core elements society incorporating the natural environment and future generations and three types of co-created and co-delivered value: public, partner and customer. The Value Triangle together with the corresponding canvas is presented through a business case for sustainability represented by Italian company Loccioni. The results show that the proposed business model framework and canvas allow managers to understand, analyse and evaluate their business models along all three dimensions of sustainability – economic, social, and environmental simultaneously. Such an understanding helps drive the field towards making a meaningful contribution to solving the UN global challenges and sustainability agenda.
Background: In recent decades, the role of technology in health care organizations has become increasingly relevant because it enhances health care outcomes and the achievement of clinical goals. Extant research demonstrates that the effectiveness of a medical innovation depends largely on health care professionals' perceptions of its usefulness and impact on their activities and practices. We also know that interaction among social actors contributes to the shaping of their judgments and opinions regarding innovation. Purpose: This study investigated the role of professionals' social networks and social capital in the formation of similar individual perceptions about a highly innovative robotic surgical system. Methodology: We collected data from a sample of 50 professionals, including both physicians and nurses, working in three hospital wards belonging to an Italian hospital organization. Using a survey, we gathered data on professionals' demographic characteristics, the adoption and impact of the new technology, and social networks. We tested our hypotheses using a dyadic perspective and logistic regression quadratic assignment procedures. Findings: Our findings document that professionals' perceptions regarding technological change were more likely to be similar when they were connected and exhibited similarity in some social capital characteristics and adoption behavior. Practice implications: These results have important implications for health care executives and administrators, as well as for health professionals characterized by high degrees of autonomy and for which organizational change can be affected by professional or organizational resistance.