Kathleen Diener Copyright: © Marcus Gerards


Prof. Dr.

Kathleen Diener

Hochschule Niederrhein, Institut für Unternehmenskybernetik an der RWTH Aachen & RWTH TIM Institut

Affiliated Professor


RWTH Aachen TIM,
Kackertstraße 7
52072 Aachen


Phone: +49 241 80 96576
Fax Fax: +49 241 80 92367


  • Scientific Director of the Affiliated Institute for Business Cybernetics e.V.
  • Cooperation in research projects between RWTH, IfU and HS Niederrhein
  • Coordination and implementation of the "Open Innovation Accelerator" market study


Prof. Dr. Kathleen Diener is Professor of Business Information Systems & Digital Innovation at the Niederrhein University of Applied Sciences, Managing Director of the Institute for Business Cybernetics at RWTH Aachen University and permanent visiting researcher at the RWTH TIM Institute. Previously, she conducted research with Henry Chesbrough during a PostDoc year at UC Berkeley. Kathleen Diener studied psychology at Humboldt University Berlin and did her PhD in the field of organisation of open innovation projects at RWTH Aachen University.
She is currently researching the phenomenon of organisational change from two perspectives. On the one hand, Prof. Diener is interested in different forms of collaboration (e.g. crowdsourcing) to cope with environmental change. Topics such as social capital, open innovation, business model innovation and innovation ecosystems are in the foreground. On the other hand, she looks at individual cognitions in the innovation context and how these influence decision-making.

Research interests:

  • Open Innovation
  • Organisational theory
  • Innovation intermediaries
  • Bibliometrics
  • Not-Invented-Here Syndrome

Research methods:

  • Methods of analysis: qualitative and quantitative data analysis
  • Software: SPSS, STATA, SmartPLS
  • Data basis: Interviews, primary surveys

Selected publications:

  • Pollok, P., Amft, A., Diener, K., Lüttgens, D., & Piller, F. T. (2021). Knowledge diversity and team creativity: How hobbyists beat professional designers in creating novel board games. Research Policy, 50(8), 104174.
  • Piller, F. T., Pollok, P., & Diener, K. (2021, editors). The 18th Open & User Innovation Conference (OUI 2021): Book of Abstracts. Available at SSRN.
  • Piller, F., Van Dyck, M., Lüttgens, D., & Diener, K. (2021). Positioning strategies in emerging industrial ecosystems for industry 4.0. In Proceedings of the 54th Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (p. 6153).
  • Diener, K. and Piller, F. T. (2020): The Market for Open Innovation: OIASurvey2020 . Raleigh, NC: Lulu Inc. 2020 (3rd edition, first edition in 2010).
  • Diener, K., Luettgens, D., & Piller, F. T. (2020). Intermediation for open innovation: Comparing direct versus delegated search strategies of innovation intermediaries. International Journal of Innovation Management, 24(04), 2050037.
  • Brenk, S., Lüttgens, D., Diener, K., & Piller, F. (2019). Learning from failures in business model innovation: solving decision-making logic conflicts through intrapreneurial effectuation. Journal of Business Economics, 89(8), 1097-1147.
  • Zynga, A., Diener, K., Ihl, C., Lüttgens, D., Piller, F., & Scherb, B. (2018). Making Open Innovation Stick: A Study of Open Innovation Implementation in 756 Global Organizations: A large study of international companies shows that distinct routines and organizational structures differentiate organizations that succeed with open innovation. Research-Technology Management, 61(4), 16-25.
  • Antons, D., Declerck, M., Diener, K., Koch, I., & Piller, F. T. (2017). Assessing the not-invented-here syndrome: Development and validation of implicit and explicit measurements. Journal of Organizational Behavior, 38(8), 1227-1245.
  • Lüttgens, D., & Diener, K. (2016). Business model patterns used as a tool for creating (new) innovative business models. Journal of Business Models, 4(3).
  • Diener, K. (2015). Organizing collaborative innovation: studying the process of intermediaries for open innovation (Doctoral dissertation, Aachen, Techn. Hochsch., Diss., 2014).
  • Diener, K. and Piller, F. T. (2010): Support for Open Innovation: How to find the right service provider. io management, 79(11), pp. 22-28.
  • Diener, K. and Lang, A. (2008): Open Innovation with your own customer. Science Management, 14(6), pp. 16-22.

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