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Fostering an Innovation Culture: Talent, Discipline and Leadership

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Innovation has been a hot topic for the past few decades. Companies all over the world have integrated innovation into their overall strategies and marketing campaigns. True innovation is, in fact, not all that much fun. In the end, necessity is the mother of true innovation.

What is innovation?

Harold Jarche

In writing almost 100 posts on innovation since 2007, it’s time to put the core observations together into a cohesive narrative. Innovation is fifteen different things to fifteen different people. Innovation today is people making connections. An Innovation Process?

The Complex Nature of Cloud-based Innovation

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

I find it helpful to look at cloud along two key dimensions: as a technology to improve IT productivity, and as a platform for enabling business innovation. Only one company in six viewed cloud as a way of fostering business innovation.

The Top Ten Emerging Technologies of 2018

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

For the past several years, the World Economic Forum (WEF) has published an annual list of the Top Ten Emerging Technologies that would be potentially disruptive over the next three to five years while also providing significant benefits to economies and societies.

learning in complexity and chaos

Harold Jarche

But more of our challenges are complex and cannot be solved in a standard way — inequality, refugees, populism, racism. Whenever people are involved, within a global context of climate change, the situation is likely complex. We have to learn constantly in complexity.

Scale and Complex Systemic Innovation

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

The column addresses a fundamental question that those studying innovation have been wrestling with for years: “Are big companies the best catalysts of innovation, or are small ones better?” The column is based on a recent study - Scale and Innovation in Today’s Economy - by Michael Mandel , chief economic strategist of the Progressive Policy Institute. As a result, there are reasons to believe that scale may be a plus for innovation in today’s economy, not a minus.”

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Disruptive Innovation Revisited

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

The recent New Yorker article, - The Disruption Machine: What the gospel of innovation gets wrong , - by Harvard history professor Jill Lepore , has led to a flurry of opinions on disruptive innovation. The New Yorker described the article as “Rethinking the innovation craze.”

Once Lumbering, Now Innovative Incumbents Hit Their Stride

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Even in industries where competitive concentration is increasing, innovation hasn’t – as would be expected – flatlined.”. They’ve outperformed their peers in financial results and innovation over the past three years.

Robocalypse Now? Technology, Productivity and Employment

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

they asked in the paper’s abstract. “Canonical economic theory says no, but much recent economic theory says maybe - that is, rapid advances in machine capabilities may curtail aggregate labor demand as technology increasingly encroaches on human job tasks.”. Is the Robocalypse upon us?,

Technological Unemployment and the Future of Work

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Few topics are as important, - and as challenging to anticipate, - than the future of work given our justifiable fears of rising technological unemployment. One such discussion took place this past September at the The World Summit on Technological Unemployment in New York.

Gender Diversity, Empathy and Technology

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

What’s the value of gender diversity in technology-based disciplines? Is gender diversity an asset for technology-based companies? Are men inherently better than women at technology-based jobs? The human brain may well be one of the most complex structures in the universe.

The Science of Innovation

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Innovation - identified by MIT economist and Nobel laureate Robert Solow as the driver of long-term, sustainable economic growth and prosperity - has been a hallmark of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology since its inception.” The innovation paradigm has changed.

Making sense of complexity and innovation

Harold Jarche

Friday’s Finds: Gall’s Law: A complex system that works is invariably found to have evolved from a simple system that worked. A complex system designed from scratch never works and cannot be patched up to make it work. Innovation is continuous.

The MIT Inclusive Innovation Competition

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

About three years ago, MIT launched the Initiative on the Digital Economy (IDE), a major effort focused on the broad changes brought about by the relentless advances of digital technologies. Previous technological innovation has always delivered more long-run employment, not less.

Technology, Media and Culture - the Best of Times or the Worst of Times?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

USC’s Annenberg Innovation Lab (AIL) was founded in 2010 to study the transformational impact of technology on culture and on the media industries. How can you best understand the impact of disruptive technologies on something as deeply human as culture?

Technology and the Future of Media

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Most everyone will agree that advances in information and communication technologies (ICT) are radically transforming the business landscape. Digital technologies are not only giving rise to more distributed and inclusive models, but are also enabling alternative unilateral-like models.

The Blockchain and Open Innovation

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Transformational innovations don’t always play out as originally envisioned. But, as with the Internet, the Web and other major technologies, the blockchain has now transcended its original objective. Once in the marketplace, they seem to acquire a life of their own.

The “Recombinant” Nature of Digital Innovations

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Customer self-service is an excellent example of recombinant innovations , which UC Davis professor Andrew Hargadon defines as innovations that “rather than chasing whole new ideas, [are] focused on recombining old ideas in new ways.” Is innovation accelerating or slowing down?

Payment Technologies: Past, Present and Future

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

History can be a useful guide to the future, especially when trying to predict the impact of disruptive changes on human organizations and cultures. I was reminded of this dictum when recently attending a very interesting workshop, Payment Technologies: Past Present and Future.

A Growing Backlash Against the Relentless Advances in Technology?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Few business concepts have been as long and widely used as disruptive innovation. His 1997 bestseller, The Innovator''s Dilemma , further elaborated and popularized the concept. Innovation has played a central role in my long career.

Intervention Design: Overcoming Stiff Resistance to a New, Disruptive Innovation

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

With four articles on the subject, HBR ’s overriding message is that design is no longer just for physical products, being increasingly applied to customer experiences, innovation, business strategy, and complex problem solving. .

Solow Paradox 2.0: The Lagging Impact of Technology Advances on Productivity Growth

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Which is why few topics have generated as much concern among economists and policy makers as the sharp decline in productivity growth in the US and other advanced economies over the past decade, - despite accelerating technology advances.

Automation Technologies and the Future of Work

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Last year, McKinsey launched a multi-year study to explore the potential impact of automation technologies on jobs, organizations and the future of work. “Can we look forward to vast improvements in productivity, freedom from boring work, and improved quality of life?,”

The 2016 MIT Inclusive Innovation Awards

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Several months ago, MIT’s Initiative on the Digital Economy launched its first annual Inclusive Innovation Competition (IIC). MIT is one of the world’s top research universities, renowned as well for its entrepreneurial culture.

Innovation as a Journey into the Future

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

I recently read an excellent innovation report, - Strategic Orientations for Innovation: Chile in the 2025 Horizon. He was a Senator then, a position he held from March of 2002 until his appointment to president of the Innovation Council.

The Internet, Blockchain, and the Evolution of Foundational Innovations

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Last year, a panel of global experts convened by the World Economic Forum selected blockchain as one of the Top Ten Emerging Technologies for 2016, based on its potential to fundamentally change the way economies work.

Innovation Hubs in the Global Digital Economy

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Disruptive innovations, - like the power looms allegedly smashed by protesting Luddites, - have been displacing human labor for the past two centuries. Over time, these same disruptive innovations rejuvenated the economy, and led to the creation of new industries and jobs.

The Puzzling Technology Adoption Discrepancy Between Individuals and Institutions

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

The Foundation index, measures the fast moving advances in technology performance and adoption, as well as the shifts of global public policy that are reducing the barriers to entry and movement. This discrepancy in technology adoption has been observed for the past few years.

A Novel Method for Measuring the Value of Free Digital Services

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

While suitable when economies were dominated by the production of physical goods, GDP does not adequately capture the growing share of services and increasingly complex solutions that characterize advanced economies.

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How Can We Ensure that Our Complex AI Systems Do What We Want Them to Do?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Things are even tougher with people-centric sociotechnical systems, which not only have to deal with potential software problems, but with the even more complex issues involved in human behaviors and interactions. What is it that makes these systems so intrinsically complex?

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hold space for complex problems

Harold Jarche

Technology (think 5 billion people, digitized knowledge, ubiquitous cloud). Globalisation (think continued bubbles and crashes, a regional underclass, the world becoming urban, frugal innovation). Every one of the major challenges facing us is complex.

Preparing Students for an Increasingly Complex Business World

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Are engineering and management schools adequately preparing students for our fast-changing, highly complex business world? Universities generally do a pretty good job when it comes to teaching hard skills, - engineering methods, technology, analytical tools, finance, marketing, and so on.

Big Data, Complex Systems and Quantum Mechanics

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

In thinking about this question over the last few years, I started to notice that a number of subtle, non-intuitive concepts that I learned many years ago as a physics student seem to apply to the world of big data and information-based predictions in highly complex systems. So is the world of highly complex systems , especially those systems whose components and interrelationships are themselves quite complex, as is the case with systems biology and evolution. .

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Market-facing Innovation Labs

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

As technologies and markets changed, most such labs declined in importance over the next twenty years. But, they are being reincarnated in our 21st century information economy as market-facing innovation labs, with significantly different and broader scopes than those of the original industrial economy research labs. The rate and pace of technology advances significantly accelerated. is rapidly disappearing, especially in the information-technology industry.

Blockchain - Once Again, the Technological Genie Has Been Unleashed from its Bottle

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

This generality has enabled the Internet to become one of , if not, the most prolific innovation platforms the world has ever seen. T]hese seven principles can serve as a guide to designing the next generation of high-performance and innovative companies, organizations and institutions.

Can AI Help Translate Technological Advances into Strategic Advantage?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Go is a very complex game, for which there are more possible board positions than there are particles in the universe. Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic,” is one of the most memorable quotes of science fiction writer Arthur C.

Gender Diversity, Empathy and Technology

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

What’s the value of gender diversity in technology-based disciplines? Is gender diversity an asset for technology-based companies? Are men inherently better than women at technology-based jobs? The human brain may well be one of the most complex structures in the universe. To help us address increasingly complex problems, the bulk of modern work , - in technology as well as most other fields, - is more and more team-based.

The Third Wave of the Digital Economy - Promises and Challenges

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

“The next wave of digital innovation is coming. Countries can welcome it, prepare for it, and ride it to new heights of innovation and prosperity, or they can ignore the changing tide and miss the wave,” writes Robert Atkinson in The Task Ahead of Us.

Data Science and the Changing Nature of Research and Innovation

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Last month, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (AAAS) released the results of a new study, ARISE II: Unleashing America’s Research & Innovation Enterprise. Organizational structures and cultural attitudes are not keeping up with changing realities.

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Innovation Thoughts

Clark Quinn

So I presented on innovation to the local ATD chapter a few weeks ago, and they did an interesting and nice thing: they got the attendees to document their takeaways. I started talking about why innovation was needed, and then what it was. And, of course, it requires the right culture.

The Firm as a Large, Complex, Extended Family

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

A recent Economist article, One of the Giants , summed up Professor Coase life’s work in his own words: “I have made no innovations in high theory. A firms is best viewed as a kind-of rather large and highly complex family.

Managing in Complexity

Harold Jarche

As our markets and technologies get more complex, we need new models to get work done. For instance, we know that creative work can yield more innovation, yet our workplaces usually stifle creativity. This can be fostered in a culture of perpetual Beta.

Transmedia Storytelling and Collaborative Innovation

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Marketing and communications are essential when introducing a disruptive innovation in the marketplace, given the need to explain what the new initiative is all about to key constituencies including clients, analysts and reporters. And, the more powerful, important and complex the messages you are trying to convey, the more important it is that you do so by telling a compelling, emotionally resonant story. Transmedia reminds us that above all, content trumps technology.