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EMAC 2021 Annual Conference

How Modularity Theory explains the main components of Digital Business Ecosystems: The case of Bizum, an instant mobile payment solution in Spain

Published: May 25, 2021


José María Visconti-Caparrós, ESIC Business & Marketing School; Juan Ramón Campos-Blázquez, ESIC Business & Marketing School; Patricio Morcillo Ortgeaspain, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid


Technological disruption and social transformation have gone hand-in-hand in recent decades and caused radical changes in the viability of business strategies. This continuous change, happening with unprecedent speed, forces organizations to consider being part of new collaborative value creation networks, such as digital business ecosystems (DBEs). Although scholars have analyzed DBEs from different perspectives since its emergence over a decade ago, DBE research lacks its own theories. Through a single case study, the purpose of this study is to identify the main components and its relationships of the DBE of the Spanish instant mobile payment solution Bizum, under the Modularity Theory developed by Baldwin (2020a). The findings show that technology shapes the ecosystem and helps to create superior digital value as an instrument to solve technical or strategic bottlenecks. The main contribution of this study is that this theory can be considered as a first step for a DBE specific theorisation.


We would like to thank all those professionals from Bizum who have participated in this research for their support and, in particular, we appreciate the generous help and support we received from Ángel Nigorra, General Manager and Lorena Poza, Marketing D