An effectuation and causation perspective on the role of design thinking practices and digital capabilities in platform-based ventures

Publication Name

Technological Forecasting and Social Change


The evolution of digital platforms and related ecosystems has led to a new and essential context of entrepreneurship. Previous studies have revealed that although high-tech new ventures possess cutting-edge technology, they face significant challenges because of vital resource constraints and limited management capability. Design thinking practices have emerged as a prominent problem-solving approach offering innovation benefits during high uncertainties. However, in the context of high-tech ventures, more research is needed on linking the relationship between design thinking principles, innovation theories (effectuation and causation), and firm performance. The present study investigates how the design thinking principles influence innovation theories and whether it leads to improved high-tech venture performance. Based on a survey of 291 platform-based start-ups in India, the results show that design thinking ways are well integrated into the theories of effectuation and causation, facilitating the growth of platform-based ventures. However, the influence of effectuation and causation on platform-based venture performance is found to be mediated through the digital capabilities acquired by these ventures.

Open Access Status

This publication may be available as open access



Article Number


Funding Sponsor

National Natural Science Foundation of China



Link to publisher version (DOI)