When you encounter a definition for innovation (there are quite a few), it will most likely revolve around either the concept of Idea or the figure of the Customer, maybe even both. So what is first? The idea or the customer? The chicken or the egg? Allow me to think laterally for a moment and say… none of the above!
To measure or not to measure, that is the question…
Most of us are very familiar with the good old management saying that goes: “if it cannot be measured, it cannot be managed”. I have to say that this statement always gives me a chill down my spine. I am not saying that it is not true, but my scientific background reminds me of what is known as the Observer Effect in Physics. So, welcome back to another post in the Physics of Innovation series, where we will speak about measuring.
When thy neighbour’s house is on fire…
In these last years we have seen how the urban transport company that moves more people in the world, Uber, does not own any vehicle; that the greatest content providers, Facebook and YouTube, do not generate most of their content; that the largest lodging provider, Airbnb, does not own any hotel or apartment… These are not original observations and there are a number of people using these examples to jump into the realms of Collaborative Economy. In this post I will try to relate this phenomenon to my current professional sector, Engineering Services.
Katerva – Accelerating the future…
It has been quite some time since my last post in Innovation papers, but I will try to pick up where I left it. I want to start sharing with you what I find to be one of the most interesting and worthwhile initiatives I am aware of in the field of Innovation, Sustainability and Human Progress. I am talking about Katerva and the Katerva Awards, the “Nobel Prize” of Sustainabilty.
Retrovation, by Carlos Aragón
I am happy to include today a post from my first “guest writer”, Carlos Aragón, who works with me in the Innovation Management team at Ineco. In his post he speaks about the “Retrovation” trend, going back to the old stuff, as a contrast to Innovation. I hope you find it interesting! (more…)
Solving the Innovator’s Dilemma?
When I started working on Innovation some years ago, one of the first and best readings that I had the chance of enjoying was the book “The Innovator’s Dilemma”, from Clayton Christensen. If you work in the innovation world, you most probably have already read this book, but if you haven’t, I certainly recommend you to do so.
Although it has taken me a little more than expected, I am back with a new chapter of my series about the Physics of Innovation. Today I am going to speak about something as basic and even primordial as “Fire”. Since the early days of humankind, we are attracted to that dancing show of light and heat that allowed us to comfort ourselves, cook our food, make tools, etc. (more…)
Welcome to Innovation Papers
When I told some friends that I intended to set-up a blog to talk about Innovation, one of them very wisely told me: “But why? Innovation is already a worn-out concept!”. Well, I believe there is some truth in this because we are currently experiencing an Innovation bubble or “Innoflation”. Everyone is using the term so much that it seems that if you do not innovate, you will fall from the edge of Earth…
The three-body problem: chaos at innovation
First of all, let me wish you a happy and interesting 2016. As I warned you, I might write some more about the Physics of Innovation. The idea behind this series is to relate well-known physics theorems or phenomena with innovation activities, in order to use them as inspiration or means for reflection.
Let me start this second post with a question: Would you say that innovation is a random or a deterministic process? I will elaborate some more on this, because I believe that the correct answer would be a third one, innovation is a chaotic process.
I am a physicist by training, a manager by trade and an innovator by practice. A few days ago I was able to link together these aspects of my life when I was invited to participate as a speaker at the Innovation Day (www.eldiadelainnovacion.es) organised by Actitud Creativa in Madrid. My talk used the concept of wormholes in relation with Innovation and the idea was well received, so I thought it would be nice to post it here to reach more people that could be inspired by it. I have other such relations in mind, so this post can be the first of a series where I will try to link well known Physics concepts with innovation situations or challenges, the “Physics of Innovation” we may call it.