Ustomer involvement in new product development

i??If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horsesi??. This popular quote is attributed to Henry Ford i?? the founder of Ford Motor Company i?? and it often triggers heated discussions among marketing and innovation experts. One stream of experts passionately emphasizes the merits of getting close to customers through intensive research and developing products based on customer research. Others, however, argue that customers cannot provide insights which will lead to breakthrough innovation because they cannot possibly provide input and feedback for products that do not yet exists. Discuss the role of customer research in new product development and explain whether you think consumer research is critical to new product development (Note: whether Henry Ford actually said this also debated, but this is not the point in your report).
In your report, you may take a side on your chosen debate or try to reconcile the conflicting perspectives by explaining contextual conditions under which one or the other view holds. Please note that you are expected to go beyond your own reasoning and the core textbook. You will need to review marketing theories and current practices, and incorporate relevant concepts and examples into your report to support your arguments. You can expect a high mark if your report:
? Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of the relevant marketing concepts
? Comprise of convincing arguments with clear and logical reasoning
? Incorporate real life cases and academic research to support arguments
? Have a coherent structure

The written report should be 1500 words in length, double-spaced, with 2.54 cm margins all around, and a font size of 11 or 12. If you have other supplementary materials (e.g., tables, figures, screenshots), you can put them in appendices (which are not included in the word limit), but the contribution of the appendices to the report should be integrated within the main text. References also do not count in word limit.