Haico te Kulve, UT

Title: Which niches can be identified for organic LED architectural lighting applications?
Session: 11:30


New and emerging technologies are often associated with expectations regarding their 'revolutionary character', the creation and disruption of markets and industries. New technologies can induce new business models which replace existing ones. However, scholars have suggested that novel products (competing with existing products) often first have to fit with the existing dominant business logics and may overthrow them only at a later stage. The case of organic LEDs (OLEDS) for general lighting applications and their associated business models in the making, offers the possibility for a real-time study into the co-evolutionary dynamics of emerging technologies and their impacts on emerging/transforming industries. OLEDS are expected to be a promising lighting source. Their properties afford radically new lighting design options and may bring about significant changes in the product value chain. Presently, high expectations have been tempered and firms in the lighting industry appear to be rather skeptical. Once embraced as 'revolutionary' by major incumbent lighting manufacturers such as Philips and recently also Osram, these big firms have now abandoned their investments in OLED for general lighting applications. Earlier projections of large-scale introduction of OLEDs for general lighting applications around 2015 turned out to be incorrect (OLEDs for automotive and displays are still seen as promising, but are not part of our study). Our diagnosis is that OLEDs do not easily fit with the dominant business logic of replacing existing light sources with more energy-efficient sources. In our conclusions we reflect on the drivers which influence the ability of OLEDs to change the lighting industry.


Haico te Kulve is a postdoctoral researcher at the STEPS department at the University of Twente. He has a background in science, technology & innovation studies. In his research he analyzes how individuals and organizations manage technological and institutional change processes. He is interested in finding patterns in such change processes and applying them into practice by supporting researchers and technology entrepreneurs to develop smart, reflexive technology development and market introduction strategies. For this he applies the approach of Constructive Technology Assessment, including interactive scenario workshops. In his empirical work he focuses on enabling micro- and nanotechnologies and security technologies. He is currently working on two research projects within the NanoNextNL program.

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