Business models for academic prototypes: A new approach to media innovation


  • Lars Nyre University of Bergen
  • Joao Ribeiro MobileTech
  • Bjørnar Tessem



innovation method, academic prototype, journalism, lean start-up, business canvas modelling


This article introduces the concept of academic prototypes, and shows how they can lead to technological innovation in journalism. We propose an innovation method that transforms a value-oriented academic prototype into a market-oriented journalistic service. The principles for product development presented here are based on the lean startup method as well as business model canvassing. A prototype scenario shows how the locative information app PediaCloud could be transformed into a locative news service for a regional newspaper in Western Norway. Ideally, the academic prototype will be transformed into a novel and engaging way of reading news stories, and a profitable solution for the newspaper. Realistically, the team will have acquired empirical validation of the business model's strong and weak points. In the conclusion, we summarize the utility of the approach for validated learning, and make recommendations for further research on innovation with academic prototypes.


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