External knowledge sourcing strategies for environmental innovation in the industrial sector of Nigeria

ECO-DEKS is Marie Skłodowska-Curie action (MSCA) project funded by Euroepan Commission.The ECO-DEKS Marie Curie fellow is Muhammed Morufu Sanni

General Objectives

The overall objective of ECO-innovation and the Dynamics of External Knowledge Sourcing (ECO-DEKS) is to examine the dynamics of alliance portfolio for eco-innovation in the manufacturing and service sectors of Nigeria using both qualitative and quantitative data. ECO-DEKS focuses on the two sectors because of their significance to environmental sustainability. Together, these two sectors account for 70.84% of the GDP of the Nigerian economy in 2017. The sectors are similar in that they are characterised by considerable innovation potentials and by the highest potential environmental gains, but differ in terms of technology and the context within which the economic agents act. Therefore, the way in which firms within each sector access external knowledge useful for innovation is arguably and markedly different. To date, virtually no evidence exists regarding how eco-innovative firms in the manufacturing and service sectors access and implement analytic and synthetic external knowledge for competitive green advantage particularly within the context of developing countries. Shedding light on these crucial issues will bring fresh and policy-relevant insights to the debate on the greening of the economy in developing countries hence the need for this project.

Expected Results

To the best of our knowledge, ECO-DEKS is the first project to bring to light the dynamics of alliance portfolio or external knowledge sourcing strategies for eco-innovation within the context of developing countries using samples from the biggest economy in Africa.ECO-DEKS will also generate data that can serve as basis for comparison between manufacturing and service eco-innovative firms. This will allow the first-of-its-kind investigation of points of departure or convergence between the two sectors in open eco-innovation studies. Systematic studies on eco-innovation in the service sector are largely missing in the mainstream literature both in the developed and developing countries despite the increasing global relevance of this sector to environmental sustainability. ECO-DEKS intends to bridge this gap. ECO-DEKS will also investigate less explored gender dimensions in eco-innovative performance so as to understand the effects of female firm-level leadership on eco-innovation implementation. Choosing Nigeria as the focus of the analysis is strategically important for other similar developing countries based on the composition of its economy and market potentials. This has a lot of implications for knowledge transfer for technological and non-technological eco-innovations across the boundaries created by specialised knowledge domains between the North and the South.

Project Info
Funded by

European Commission

Start Date

23 October 2019

End Date

22 October 2021


24 months