Idea Co-creation on Social Media Platforms: Towards a Theory of Social Ideation

Document Type



social media; Information systems applications; Collaborative and social computing systems and tools; ideation; innovation; idea co-creation

Identifier Data


Association for Computing Machinery


Innovation scholars have long been discussing social media as a rich source of information, knowledge, and new ideas, yet, whether or how social media can directly intervene with organizational ideation processes remains unclear. In this study, we investigate the impact of external and enterprise social media platforms on organizational ideation. Grounded in 79 cases and adapting social capital theory in social media contexts, this study attempts to develop a theory of social ideation. Social ideation consists of social media-enabled mechanisms that generate social capital, enable multi-level social exchanges, foster idea co-creation activities such as idea sourcing, filtering, elaboration, and integration, and ultimately lead to effective ideation. Our study contributes to social media and innovation research by revealing the intermediary mechanisms that link the use of social media platforms to organizational ideation performance.