Innovation

#concept4 mentions

In its most common sense, innovation is the creation and introduction of new, redesigned, or substantially improved Products, processes or Systems.

More generally, innovation is the successful transition between Exploration and Exploitation of the innovating System’s Environment.

It can be understood as:

  1. the practice of making this transition,
  2. the process that structures this practice,
  3. the System the practice takes place in.

Each of these interpretations suggests different tools and Frameworks to support innovation. Most popular accounts focus on the first or the second interpretation, offering either a list of best practices or a set of process rules as guidelines.

On the third interpretation, innovation is a Complex System: it is not an aggregate of individual behaviour, but a dynamic network of interacting agents, strategies, artefacts, and conditions. The agents and their strategies are not static, but adaptive: they constantly change in response to each other, to aggregate properties of the system, and to external events. Thus, the practice and process of innovation are only part of, and highly dependent on, the system they take place in.

Therefore Sensemaking Frameworks are the most adequate tools to support innovation.

There a three contributions to a system’s capability to innovate (which can all be supported with such frameworks):

The first is Imagination, the human ability to ‘see’ things that do not (not yet, not any more, not at all) exist, conjuring up unbridled ideas neither bounded by reality nor subject to any checks.

The second is intent, which directs our creative musings towards specific targets. Together, imagination and intent define our Creativity, that purposeful free-wheeling of the human mind.

The third is agency, the ability to influence and shape our Environment in a desired way. This is what lets us turn ethereal ideas into tangible reality.Ehlert (2022)

Because technological Innovation fuels continuous growth which leads to Climate and Ecological Breakdown, We need social, not technological innovation.

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