#OUI2021 goes fully virtual in

Remote Conference Live from RWTH Aachen, June 21 and 22, 2021

The International Open and User Innovation (OUI) Conference is the leading academic conference on user innovation and open innovation, two closely related paradigms that have changed our thinking about innovation and creativity in the last decades.

Organized by the Open & User Innovation Society since 2002, the OUI Conference brings together about 300-400 researchers from around the world to exchange recent research in open innovation, user innovation, open source/open hardware, collaborative innovation, citizen/free innovation, open innovation policies, and related topics.

In 2021, the Institute for Technology & Innovation Management at RWTH Aachen University, Germany is proud to host #OUI2021, the 18th edition of this conference, a double feature of the OUI due to the corona pandemic (hence, OUI 2020+1).

The community of scholars meeting at OUI is characterized by a very open, developmental academic culture sharing plenty of feedback and ideas. The conference targets mainly an academic audience of faculty, senior researchers, and PhD students, but is also open to reflected practitioners and policy makers interested in open and user innovation.

The OUI is truly multidisciplinary, covering disciplines such as innovation management, strategic management, organization design, marketing, intellectual property rights, entrepreneurship, and public policy, but also health care, psychology, and industrial engineering and design.

#OUI2021 Conference Mode

After careful consideration of the pandemic situation, we made the decision to hold the OUI2020+1 as a virtual-only event and not offer a physical conference option this summer. Main conference sessions (paper presentations and keynotes) will be held virtually on June 21 and 22 in the afternoon hours of CEST or morning hours of EST.

We worked hard to make #OUI2021 a truly interactive experience — no streaming of recorded talks, for example! The focus is on interaction, discussion, exchange, and learning. Along the official program, we will provide various networking opportunities for participants.

#OUI2021 Program Overview

#OUI2021 Conference Tracks

This year’s OUI conferences features an All OUI Track, with invited and featured panels, workshops, and plenary sessions on the larger themes of open and user innovation.

In the center of the conference are its academic tracks, presenting both latest research (full presentations) and research ideas & proposals – hence providing a glimpse into the future  of OUI.

  • Open Social Innovation: Healthcare, Sustainability, and Societal Challenges;
  • Open and User Innovation Platforms;
  • Lead users, Toolkits, and User Identification;
  • Firms‘ Capabilities and Interaction for Open and User Innovation;
  • Crowdsourcing and Distributed Problem Solving;
  • Crowdfunding and User Entrepreneurship;
  • Institutions, Innovation Law, and Policy;
  • Open Software, Open Hardware, and Makers;
  • Diffusion of Open and User Innovation;
  • The Internet of Production: Industry 4.0, User Process Innovation, and Data Ecosystems.


Registration (top right on this page) is now possible and continues until the conference starts. On the next pages, you always find the latest program and more information about the conference. Your conference fees help us cover the cancellation costs from 2020 and the conference platform for this year’s conference.

We are looking forward to welcoming you at #OUI2021. Your conference hosts, Kathleen Diener, Frank Piller & Patrick Pollok