Innovation in times of crisis

the role of orchestration mechanisms and the innovation network in the development of the ELMO Helmet




orchestration of innovation, innovation networks, innovation in times of crisis, COVID-19, ELMO Helmet


Purpose: This research aims to investigate the role of orchestration mechanisms and the innovation network in the development of the ELMO helmet as an innovative solution to the effects of COVID-19.

Methodology/approach: This study employed an exploratory and descriptive case study design, incorporating both qualitative and quantitative data collection and analysis techniques. Data were gathered through interviews, observations, technical visits, and document analyses.

Originality/Relevance: This article tackles a topic that has received limited attention in existing literature. It contributes to a deeper understanding of the processes and dynamics of orchestration in innovation networks during periods of crisis while also shedding light on the various roles played by actors involved in these networks.

Main results: The findings highlight the performance and significance of the roles assumed by actors within the ELMO helmet innovation network. Moreover, an informal hierarchical structure was observed among these actors, with certain individuals assuming leadership positions and gaining legitimacy. The results also revealed the dynamism and autonomy of the ELMO helmet innovation network, showcasing the complementary orchestration capabilities demonstrated through knowledge mobility, innovation appropriability, and network stability.

Theoretical/methodological contributions: The study contributes to the field by reaffirming the positive relationship among the integration, betweenness, and orchestration of actors within innovation networks, as well as suggesting new avenues for future research.

Social contributions: The study provides subsidies for government and business managers to understand the dynamics that involve the innovation process and to develop strategies aimed at the effectiveness of an innovation network through orchestration.


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Author Biographies

Paulo Torres Junior, Ceará State University / Fortaleza (CE)

Professor at the Center of Applied Social Studies of the Ceará State University (CESA-UECE). PhD student in administration (Graduate Program in Administration – PPGA/UECE). Master in public policy evaluation (Graduate Program in Public Policy Evaluation – PPGAPP/Federal University of Ceará – UFC). Lawyer specialized in public law and administrator. Researcher at the Blue Economy Laboratory (BLUELAB) and the Innovation Laboratory of the UECE

Samuel Façanha Câmara, Ceará State University / Fortaleza (CE)

Adjunct Professor at the State University of Ceará. PhD in economics from the Federal University of Pernambuco (UFPE) (2002). Conducted post-doctoral research in innovation management at the Brazilian School of Public and Business Administration of the Fundação GetulioVargas (FGV EBAPE) (2013). Master in rural economy from the Federal University of Ceará (UFC) (1993). Coordinator of the project RedeNit-CE (an innovation network formed with the Technological Innovation Centers – NITs – of the state of Ceará). Coordinator of the Research Center on Management, Technology, Innovation, and Knowledge (GESTIC – UEC).

Teresa Lenice Nogueira da Gama Mota, Instituto Federal do Ceará / Fortaleza (CE)

Professor of the Master's Degree in Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer at IFCe PROFNIT. PhD in development and environmental studies from the Federal University of Piauí (UFPI) (2016). Master in economics from the Center for the Improvement of Economists of the Brazilian Northeast (CAEN)(1994). Bachelor’s degree in economics from the Federal University of Ceará (1975).


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How to Cite

Torres Junior, P., Façanha Câmara, S., & Nogueira da Gama Mota, T. L. (2024). Innovation in times of crisis: the role of orchestration mechanisms and the innovation network in the development of the ELMO Helmet. International Journal of Innovation, 12(1), e23732.