The nexus between dynamic capabilities and competitive firm performance: the mediating role of open innovation

Asta Pundziene, Shahrokh Nikou*, Harry Bouwman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

42 Citations (Scopus)
60 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose: Prior research has reported the indirect implications of firm's dynamic capabilities on their competitive firm performance. Our attention now turns to open innovation since it has been confirmed to be an influential factor contributing to the superior performance of technological firms. So far there has been little research on assessing the relationship between a firm's dynamic capabilities as an antecedent of the competitive performance of the firm or investigations into the mediating role of open innovation in this relationship. Design/methodology/approach: Drawing on the theory of dynamic capabilities, we developed a framework as a way to better understand the role of open innovation, which could then help to better explain the relationship between firms' dynamics capabilities and their competitive firm performance. Based on the empirical data of 465 firms operating in innovative and non-innovative industries, we employed structural equation modelling (SEM) to examine the research hypotheses and the path relationships in the proposed model. Findings: The SEM analysis revealed that a firm's dynamic capabilities significantly impact its open innovation performance and that open innovation, consequently, impacts the competitive performance of the firm. Moreover, the results show that the path between dynamic capabilities and competitive firm performance is partially mediated through open innovation. Practical implications: The findings provide practical implications and draw managerial attention to the importance of: (1) investing in innovation, (2) engaging customers in the innovation process and (3) maintaining innovation management excellence as significant antecedent factors in increasing competitive firm performance. Originality/value: Considering the lack of empirical research in the literature on the links between dynamic capabilities and open innovation, this paper contributes to the dynamic capabilities and open innovation literature by confirming that open innovation not only mediates the relationship between these two aspects but also strengthens the effect the dynamic capabilities have on competitive firm performance. Besides, due to the significant impact of dynamic capabilities on open innovation, dynamic capabilities might be regarded as an antecedent of open innovation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)152-177
Number of pages26
JournalEuropean Journal of Innovation Management
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Antecedents
  • Dynamic capabilities
  • Firm performance
  • Mediating role
  • Open innovation


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