Innovation and Philosophy

Business gurus have long occupied themselves with the nature of innovation, whether it can be taught, and how it can be nurtured. But the conditions that they have identified as being necessary to generate new ideas – and turn them into valuable products and services – are familiar to anyone who has studied the philosophy of science.

MIAMI – Is it possible to learn to innovate? Is innovation something that can be taught at school?

After reading literature by some of the world’s leading experts on innovation – Clayton Christensen, Henry Chesbrough, John Kao, James Andrew, and Harold Sirkin – I was fascinated, but, alas, also frustrated. Innovation is the production of new knowledge that generates value. It is about fresh ideas that give rise to novel products, services, and processes, new management methods, and original designs and inventions that generate greater profits for firms, regions and countries.

Most experts agree that there are no ready-made formulas or recipes for how to innovate. But is it possible to create the appropriate conditions – to filter ideas and execute plans, and thus to facilitate creativity – under which innovation may flourish?

To continue reading, please log in or enter your email address.

To read this article from our archive, please log in or register now. After entering your email, you'll have access to two free articles from our archive every month. For unlimited access to Project Syndicate, subscribe now.

required

By proceeding, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, which describes the personal data we collect and how we use it.

Log in

http://prosyn.org/53kZftu;

Cookies and Privacy

We use cookies to improve your experience on our website. To find out more, read our updated cookie policy and privacy policy.