Hybrid Crowdsourcing Organizations (HCO)
: when organizational competences lead to competitive advantage, exploiting new sources of efficiencies

  • Carlo Foce (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


The basic elements subtending this study are two: the crowd and the organization, extending on Villarroel (2008, 2013). In the last 20 years these two components of the business landscape were combined creating several different outcomes. In the early days of crowdsourcing, companies were exploiting the crowd’s knowledge by running contests in order to achieve a specific solution (e.g. InnoCentive in 2001). Then some companies started to create one of their own division interlay outsourced to the crowd. Today some organizations are completely crowd dependent in almost all their activities. In this study the focus is on the last combination, the most recent, where the firm and the crowd are bilaterally interdependent. More specifically, this study analyzed and classified what we call the Hybrid Crowdsourcing Organization (HCO). Using a case study methodology this new firm organization is studied. The analysis is based on the source of competitive advantage, its value chain and its inter-organizational relationship. A comparison is made with traditional organizations through a deep and broad case study approach (Eisenhardt 1989). The theories about the nature of the firm; value chain; and competitive advantage are reconsidered as they apply (or not) to HCO. This study shows how organizational competences can drive new sources of efficiencies by a firm’s design that is able to leverage resources in a more efficient way. The HCO organizational competences build new efficiencies impacting on 3 different dimensions: the market, the industry and the company. We discuss the resources leveraged in each of these dimensions, which results in a source of competitive advantage of HCO.
Date of Award1 Jul 2014
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorJuan Andrei Villarroel Fernandéz (Supervisor)


  • Strategic crowdsourcing
  • Corporate strategy
  • Inter-organization relationship
  • Nature of the firm
  • Value chain
  • Incentives
  • Organizational competences


  • Mestrado em Gestão

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