Frugal Innovation

Lehrstuhl für Technologiemanagement

FAU Contact:
Brem, Alexander Prof. Dr.
Agarwal, Nivedita Dr.


With its roots in emerging economies, various "constraint-based Innovation" approaches (including "grassroots innovation", "jugaad", "catalytic innovation" and "social innovation") and especially the concept of "Frugal Innovation" have come a long way from focusing on subsistence marketplaces or "Bottom of the Pyramid" ("BoP") customers to being applied to address global challenges. 

At the Chair of Technology Management, within this research area, we primarily focus on exploring the concept of "Frugal Innovation" and related tools and methodologies, understanding its relevance in developed economies, identifying different technology transfers trends (including "reverse innovations") and new social entrepreneurship models.

In particular, we aim to answer following research questions:

  • Is "Frugal Innovation" gradually becoming a global phenomenon? 
  • How are the concepts of "Frugal Innovation" related to other concepts like "Jugaad" or "Gambiarra"?
  • Which implications do "Frugal Innovations" have on new product development and R&D Management?
  • How can businesses adapt their strategies, business models and value chain in order to succeed in reaching customers with "Frugal Innovations" globally?
  • What are the new applications of "Frugal Innovation" in light of todays’ digitalized and more resource-cautious world, and how can companies use that? 

Assigned publications

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Agarwal, N., Brem, A., & Dwivedi, S. (2019). Frugal & Reverse Innovation for Harnessing Emerging Markets Potential - the Case of a Danish MNC. International Journal of Innovation Management.
Brem, A., Tidd, J., & Daim, T. (Eds.) (2019). Managing innovation: internationalization of innovation. .
Agarwal, N., & Brem, A. (2018). Frugal and Reverse Innovation: Case Study Insights from a German Multinational. In John Ettlie, Ron Hira (Eds.), Engineering Globalization Reshoring and Nearshoring: Management and Policy Issues. (pp. 193-203). Singapore: World Scientific Publishing.
Agarwal, N., Chakrabarti, R., Brem, A., & Bocken, N. (2018). Market driving at Bottom of the Pyramid (BoP): An analysis of social enterprises from the healthcare sector. Journal of Business Research, 86, 234-244.
Agarwal, N., & Brem, A. (2018). Overcoming market constraints in emerging markets: Lessons from social enterprises in the Indian healthcare sector. In John Wiley & Sons (Eds.), Leveraging Constraints for Innovation: New Product Development Essentials from the PDMA..
Wolfram, P., Agarwal, N., & Brem, A. (2018). Reverse Technology Transfer from the East to the West – Evidence from R&D sites of Western Multinationals in China. European Journal of Innovation Management, 21(3), 443-455.
Weigelt, M., Mayr, A., Masuch, M., Batz, K., Franke, J., Bican, P.,... Russer, P. (2018). Techno-Economic Evaluation of Strategic Solutions to Extend the Range of Electric Vehicles. In Proceedings of the 8th International Electric Drives Production Conference (EDPC). Schweinfurt.
Agarwal, N., Brem, A., & Grottke, M. (2018). Towards a higher socio-economic impact through shared understanding of product requirements in emerging markets: The case of the Indian healthcare innovations. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 135, 91-98.
Agarwal, N., Grottke, M., Mishra, S., & Brem, A. (2017). A Systematic Literature Review of Constraint-Based Innovations: State of the Art and Future Perspectives. IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management, 64(1), 3-15.
Sliwa, S.-I., Brem, A., Agarwal, N., & Kraus, S. (2017). E-health, health systems and social innovation: a cross-national study of telecare diffusion. International Journal of Foresight and Innovation Policy, 12(4), 171–197.

Last updated on 2019-09-05 at 15:36

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