Re: Clive Doucet's case study, The Participative Budget in Porto Alegre: Insights from a Study Visit of a Canadian Councillor, The Innovation Journal, Vol. 7, No.3

April 13, 2004:

I quite agree with the observations made in Councillor Doucet's note - to a point. He is quite right that the budget process often looks like an expenditure management exercise that is handled, for the most part, behind closed doors. But it is, and is has not always been that way in every Canadian municipality.

As a former municipal chief administrative officer, I took great pains - working in partnership with my councils - to develop effective public participation in a transparent exercise that focused on activity, programs and services. And when we had determined - collectively - what we all wanted, then the conclusion was inevitable: people had to pay for what they wanted. That is the way the exercise should work.

My views on these matters was published in a series of articles carried in Alberta's Municipal Counsellor in 1980, Civic - Public Works in 1978, and Urban Focus at Queen's University in 1981.


David G. Jones
Directeur, Gestion du savoir / Director
Knowledge Management
Strategic Policy and Planning Branch /
Sous-direction de la planification et des
politiques stratégiques
(613) 993-0789

Re: Steve Bittner's "Scientific Collaboration Between Government and Industry," The Innovation Journal, Vol. 9, No. 2

April 1, 2004

The only one that ever worked was based on a RBIS (resource Based Investment System) using a CP3 ( Canadian public Private / Partnership) approach. Operaed on a new technology called S.U.R.F. that makes it imple to create partnerships and redistribute the benefits according to effort no now much money one brings t the effort.

If you ever would like to put on a workshop to better understand what an RBIS is and what it can do let me know. It is the wave of the future when you are in as much finacial trouble as we are in country wide and at all levels and no means to geerate enough money to fix ll the problems but we do hve the means and at a cost everyone can afford.

Fraser Liscumb
Inventors Resource Co-operative, Inc.

Re: Eleanor Glor's "Creativity Enhancement Books: How To, Not What To," The Innovation Journal, Vol. 8, No. 3 (June - August, 2003)

Hi Eleanor

I was just browsing the web and came across your review essay in A couple of points if I may.

Firstly: de Bono. There is no doubt that de Bono, very successfully, coined the term 'lateral thinking', and it has become part of the language. My belief is that this term was first used in 1967 in his Lateral Thinking for Management. Like all de Bono's books, this one has no references, so the reader is left to infer that everything it contains is the result of de Bono's own thinking. Arthur Koestler's The Act of Creation, published in 1964, a key chapter is entitled Thinking Aside... I find it hard to believe that de Bono, as a graduate student at Cambridge in the mid 1960s, didn't know of Koestler's work, so, in my view, the origination of the concept is not exclusiuvely with EdB...

And secondly, thank you for the generous remarks you made about my own Smart Things to Know about Innovation and Creativity - although we might have a good discussion about what is new!! What I do find to be true, however, is that my InnovAction! process, which I believe is much more tangible and well-defined than, say, lateral thinking, is enormously productive, and very accessible to literally everyone.

And while I'm here, as it were, if you ever think that there is something I might contribute to any of your endeavours - say an article, or maybe participation in a conference or whatever - please do contact me. Also, if you have a moment, you might like to see my website

Cheers Dennis


Re: Eleanor Glor's "Innovation Traps: Risks and Challenges in Thinking About Innovation," The Innovation Journal, Vol. 8, No. 3 (June - August, 2003)

Hi Eleanor

May I suggest that there is a barrier to evaluation based on the value that everybody must be treated the same? I would suggest that your article could elaborate the need for experimental evaluation of innovations using a statistical design. This would require that there:

  • are experimental and control groups;
  • the innovation is so well defined that others can introduce it;
  • that the innovation is done the same way each time;
  • and, that the participants go through the procedures that are expected of them.

Just a thought.


Re:  Ralph V. Barrett and Howard A. Doughty, "Magic, Innovation and Decision Making," The Innovation Journal, Vol. 4, No. 1 (January - April, 1999)

My daughter, Venn, and I were exploring the internet when we came across your excellent piece. (We named her after John Venn, and it worked. She has her Masters in mathematics.)

As you can see from the enclosed newspaper article, my work has received a fair amount of recognition (ed. note: Professor Moore has recently been named World Laureate of the American Biographical Institute amd placed on the National Air and Space Exploration Wall of Honor). However, no anthropologist has ever let me know what he/she thought about my magic piece.

Engineers have paid close attention to the "Talking Typewriter" and other of my inventions. Currently, I am working in Pittsburgh on a government project which involves a Tactile-Sound-Tranducer. This device turns sound into a vibratory equivalent. It permits the profoundly deaf to "feel" speech and other auditory parts of the soundscape.

Your fresh analysis of "magic" makes it clear that randomizing current decision making can make good sense. One small point which I wish to correct is that I was a Professor at Yale, not MIT, when my magic article was written. I lectured at MIT but was not on the faculty.

Another result of mathematics which is relevant to decision making is "Parrondo's Paradox". I have used this result to good effect in a casino in Central City, Colorado. I suggest you see the January/February 2001 issue of The Sciences. The article by Erica Klarreich is entitled "Playing Both Sides". It is a first-rate piece.

Professor Omar K. Moore
Responsive Environments Foundation
1420 Centre Avenue - #502
Pittsburgh, PA


January 28, 2002

Dear Eleanor,

Several years ago I found a statement by someone that allowed me to understand that even though most classified me as a consultant, a trouble shooter, or mentor in reality I was born an innovator. Unfortunately the name of the individual that made the statement disappeared a long the way but it is something that may inspire some of those that have little understanding of innovation and what an innovator is.

"Innovation is more than coming up with new ideas or even assembling a creative business plan. Innovation is learning to see what is not obvious, developing antennas for the unspoken radar of change and being unfettered by traditional thought or convention."

Canada is in trouble and for as much as we need innovators at this time we now need people willing to be part of helping make the changes needed to take Canada out of the 20th century and into the 21st century. Some think the IRC has the methodology and have developed the tools to make it happen, and like all things that help to make change it comes in its own good time and hopefully at a pace that it does not create more problems than it fixes. Yet, in time to help before we lose more than we already have. For anything that comes to fast also as a tendency to leave the same way but leaves a lot of problems behind. Just the same as those that do not embrace change over time end up losing more than they have gained and with or without their support change will take place, but usually at a high price. Canada like most countries of the world now is losing because of lack of change and little understanding that the key is not money or high tech it is understanding now to create a balance system and that requires working together in the best interest of all no just the few. Yet, allow each to remain independent to compete so we have the challenge to want to strive for change. If we wish to survive we all had better understand soon that community no longer is what you see out your window and what happens anywhere in the world does come home because there are no borders in a world attached by water, air and a transportation system that can move everything from point A to B faster than we can understand the problems being transported and a reality we do not have the technology to solve the problems or the means to remove ourselves from this planet if we damage its ability to support life. We seem to have a world that thinks money is more important than people, technology is more important than food and clean water and most believing what happens in other parts of their country or world should be of little concern because it does not effect them directly but in reality it will effect them indirectly much later in some form.

For as important as innovation is to helping maintain a future you cannot have a future until the majority understand that everything in the universe is based on having a balanced system and at present we do not have a balance system. The key to the future is understanding how to create a balance system by using innovation and even more important team effort.

Fraser Liscumb

Ontario's Regional Economic Development and Innovation Newsletter

October 2, 2001


This month’s Ontario Innovation Report #26 has the widest number of relevant articles on innovation and science and technology I have ever seen. It is well worth a click to see the index of topics. This first one from Industry Canada has some direct interest.


S&T ministers agree on principles of action to speed up the transition to an innovation and knowledge-based economy. On September 21, 2001, federal, provincial and territorial ministers responsible for research, science and technology met to discuss ways to improve research and development performance and make Canada one of the most innovative countries in the world. Key topics discussed included the crucial role of both university-based and industry-based research and development and the importance of information sharing among governments. Ministers concurred that innovation is key in raising Canada's standard of living and agreed on the goal of making Canada one of the most innovative countries in the world.

To do so, efforts by both the public and the private sectors must be undertaken to: create, adopt and commercialize knowledge; supply highly qualified personnel; and, provide a business climate which supports industrial competitiveness and excellence in innovation. Ministers also agreed that the completion of the provision of high-speed internet broadband capacity is an urgent and high priority for the innovation economy. [Industry Canada]

Issue 26 of the OREDI newsletter is available at:

Tim Norris
Senior Policy Advisor
Strategic Planning and Coordination
Natural Resources Canada

Anti-Corruption Conference

Dear Eleanor Glor, dear Raymond Bouchard,

Only recently I got to know that you are planning a conference in Canada in
January or February next year concerning Public Sector Innovation. This
includes I guess the health sector. I got the information by Arwa Hassan
whom you met two years ago in Cairo.

I am with Transparency International's secretariat in Berlin and work as a
senior adviser on corruption and health. We just finished the planning for
a double workshop at our International Anti-Corruption-Conference in Prague
on October 10. There shall be participants from Canada, the US, Germany,
Colombia, Moldova, Egypt?, all of them presenting case studies on different
aspects of the lack of integrity and bad governance. I do not know yet
whether there will be a general idea of what and how things should be
different and changed. But I am pretty sure that the results maybe of
interest for your project.

The second project we are working on is a mutual TI-WHO-project for more
integrity, some kind of a stewardship for better health service systems in
the poor South. There shall be an international conference in Geneva in
September to prepare this project. Maybe that would be of interest for you
as well.

My address is:

Dr. Anke Martiny
Bergham 9
84104 Rudelzhausen
Tel 49-8752-1000, Fax 49-8752-1013

Yours sincerely
Anke Martiny

Innovation Patterns

Hi Eleanor,

My name is Barry Winkless and at present I am studying for a PhD in Systematic
Innovation, using Triz as applied to the food industry. I am extremely
interested in your article on innovation patterns- most comprehensive and well
supported. After reading it I began to apply your 'Innovation Matrix'- i.e
Innovation pattern/Culture/Magnitude of Challenge/Example to food business
examples- and your ideas mirror perfectly some examples I have experienced in
industry- for example when ISO quality standards were made compulsory- this was
very much an Extrinsic, Top-down, Minor challenge (to big organisations).
Obviously however the magnitude of the challenge within business organisations
will probably depend a lot on company size- i.e.Large or SME's.

Barry Winkless BSc. HDip, MSc
AMT Ireland, University College Cork,
Cork City, Republic of Ireland.

A Comment on "Definitions of Innovation"

As always , very thought provoking. The notion of "Grandmother of Innovation" is a real puzzle. In my view it's something like "sufficient freedom to act". The actual motivation or "Mother" can be want, need or some other direct motivator - maybe attractive or maybe repulsion to avoid negative consequences.

Hawk's definition centred on "doing" and if that's true then a precondition is "sufficient freedom to do".

I've seen the change in organizations - including my own - that embark on quality or continuous improvement programs. Usually they start out as command and control organizations in which freedom to do anything differently doesn't exist or is at least scarce. Initially there's a problem and discomfort in making changes. After change has been going on for some time, change is expected and lack of change becomes uncomfortable. Quality programs depend on a degree of innovation (many of the descriptions and definitions you provided fit). In this context, the first condition is freedom to act.

For what it's worth.

Art Lawson


Hello Eleanor,

I am a brazilian sociologist.

The works of Mr. Rogers have being very stimulating, very important to my academic research, and teaching.
Thank you Mr. Rogers!
Thank you Eleanor!

Marcos Ponzio

Candian Health Care System

Anything with Stephen Jay Gould mentioned must be good I will read on. We had a program on TV here last night (Wed 31/1) comparing the Canadian system of health care with ours. We have a big private sector delivered mostly in publically funded hospitals you have one point of acces one set of waiting lists for all general hospital care. Have you any analysis of the Caanadian health care system and possible demands for reform? Please reply if possible to
Best Regards.

Charlie Hardy



Thanks for your note and your interest in the Canadian health care system. I don't have anything in The Innovation Journal, but you might like to take a look at the Health Canada web site at and in particular the section on the health care system at Although it is not on the health care system per se, you might also want to read some of the Second Report on the Health of Canadians at

Eleanor Glor
Editor in Chief

The Search Continues for a Case of True Employee Empowerment

My name is Hsiang-Yuan. I saw your posting on website that you were looking for "case of true employee empowerment". Now I am doing reserch about employee empowerment, and I also am looking for a real case. I am wondering if you find one, please send me email or tell me where I can find it because I can not find the real case on internet. thanks


Online with 5 Million Finns

My committee (17 MP), Committee for the Future in the Finnish Parliament went for an 1 hour ON LINE to discuss (chat) with 5 million Finns. Just great!

Paula Tiihonen
Secretary, Committee for the Future,
Parliament of Finland

Determination of an Optimal Local Demographic Density for Europe

Kind Mrs. Eleanor Glor,

Many thanks for your very courteous reply.

Indeed, I already had the fortune to meet Mr. Kurtz and we are currently in contact. Thanks the same, however, for your courtesy!

I permit myself to report below a brief announcement on our "demographic call" in case you would report a note on the Innovation Journal.

Really, we are also concerned with a campaign for an Evolution of the Common Conception of Public Employment. We have carried out a petition to the Italian Parliament with a concrete proposal inside. We are still translating the petition, but its manifesto in English language is at: while the petition in Italian is at:

I hope it could be of interest.

Really happy to have met you and the Innovation Journal on the WEB, my best regards,

Danilo D'Antonio, owner Laboratorio Eudemonia

Thanks to The Innovation Journal

Hi Eleanor,

I have much experience as an academic in the area of industry policy and innovation systems. I have little knowledge of public-sector innovation, so you can imagine my
joy when I discovered your web-site. I have spent the entire afternoon plumbing its
depths and I'm sure I will use the material extensively in a project on 'Innovation in
Government' I am currently working on. I expect to publish the report results in a refereed journal - probably a business journal rather than a public policy journal -
not sure yet. My report will be essentially a literature review, possibly to be followed
by an empirical study of innovation in the public service in Queensland, Australia.

Anyway, just to say thanks for the fabulous website and I will certainly be
citing The Innovation Journal and you. By the way, do you know if your book (Captus
Press, 1997) is available in any Australian libraries? I haven't found it yet!

Cheers and keep up the great work, much appreciated,

Dr Karen Manley
Research Fellow
QUT/CSIRO Construction Research Alliance
Queensland University of Technology
2 George Street
GPO Box 2434
Brisbane, Queensland 4001

Phone 61 7 3864 1762
Fax 61 7 3864 1170

Thoughts on Steven Kurtz’ Book Review

A Comment on Steven Kurtz’ Book Review of Reg Morrison’s The Spirit in the Gene Humanity’s Proud Illusion and the Laws of Nature, Ithaca, New York and London, England: Cornell University Press,1999

I assume I am agreeing with Morrison and Kurtz when I assert that the thoughts that reverberate in our brains are part of the experiential matrix, just as are sensory inputs, in which we make our analyses and decisions.

If we wish to be innovators, we have to be aware of the baggage, or conditioning, that constricts our freedom, whether we attribute it to traditional belief systems or to "hard-wiring". We have to be bold enough to question and revise some traditional beliefs to accord with present knowledge of the world, on the grounds that the original "religious" instructions were not "timeless", but appropriate to conditions at the time. This, of course, has to be done with care and discrimination. By whom? There's the risk.

We also have to keep an open mind as to what to include in our world of experience and discourse, not arbitrarily excluding some spheres of interest as "superstition", -- or metaphysics, for example, as "nothing but" genetic effluvia.

I question the popular assumption that our destruction of the environment and our overpopulation are to be attributed to our religious beliefs. I am not sure we need any more explanation than small span of perception, narrow sphere of self-interest, and short time-horizon -- in other words a lack of imagination, or deficiency of thinking-span. (An aspect of our hard-wiring, perhaps.)

I confess to a dissatisfaction with the classical scientific framework, which confines discourse to what can be found within the realm of the five senses, i.e. the "material" realm. Free Will cannot be found within this realm, for example, except as an illusory feeling that may or may not have advantages for genetic survival. The same with the experience of extra-sensory perception. I think it is time we left this pretense behind.

It does not correspond to how we think, and act, not even to our actual range of experience. See Gary Zukav (The Seat of the Soul), for example, on the evolutionary transition from the five-sensory human being to the multisensory human being. My suggestion may be heresy to the community of professional philosophers, but I find the "rigour" of the professional philosopher now not very useful. (Ray Jackson 15 July 2000)

Now this is innovation!
Seattle Weekly - news: Tree-huggin' lumberjacks


Published June 1 - 7, 2000
Tree-huggin' lumberjacks
Environmentalists are embracing a new strategy for saving the
forests: cut 'em themselves.


THERE WAS A TIME when logging was an environmental scourge, the
symbol of everything hateful to green activists. But now, a number of
environmental groups and green-minded politicians are coming round to a new
attitude. They're looking at ways to keep the timber industry operating in King
County--and even making plans to get into the timber "harvesting" trade

"We see this as a possible niche business," says Charlie Raines, a longtime forest activist for the Sierra Club. His newest project aims to buy up land in the Cascade foothills and then pay for it by selling off some of the timber. "We want to form forestry companies that would go more lightly on the land," says Maryanne Tagney Jones, a veteran environmental campaigner who is working with Raines.

Ex-Microsoft attorney Bill Pope, another prominent Northwest environmental leader, is working on a similar venture that would borrow money from Wall Street for huge land purchases and then use tree revenues to pay off the debt. "We're going to have to be a timber company, in the low-level sense of that term," Pope says.

These new efforts reflect "a kind of sea-change among Seattle greens," says Tagney Jones, who lives in Preston. "They're seeing that commercial logging is not the wicked awful thing we thought it was."

"Even environmentalists have come to believe that it's better to have active forestry than shopping malls everywhere," says Nancy Keith, executive director of the Mountains to Sound Greenway, which has championed this idea for a decade.

Indeed, as Fred Meyers and four-car Microsoft mansions continue their steady eastward advance from Bellevue into the Cascades, logging is starting to look better and better. From the standpoint of water quality, salmon, or clean air, even a clear-cut may be preferable to pavement. And these new lumberjacks intend to use far gentler methods.

IN KEEPING WITH this outlook, King County Executive Ron Sims has launched a new effort to keep today's timber companies in the timber-cutting business and deter them from selling off their land for subdivisions. He recently traveled to Olympia to speak at a "Private Forest Summit," where he pledged to create policies and "economic incentives" that would help make the private forestry business viable.

Sims recently invited executives from the county's two biggest private forest owners--Weyerhaeuser and Plum Creek--for private meetings with him and his staff to hear the industry's concerns. "They made it clear they were looking for some new and innovative ways to maintain commercial forestry," says Mike Yeager, Plum Creek's director of land management. "They said they recognized that we were a business. And we appreciated that."

In his Olympia speech, Sims described the forestland that covers two-thirds of King County as "the lungs of our region" and said that maintaining forests is "the single most effective solution to most of the environmental issues we are facing"--including the problem of endangered salmon.

"Most people think of forestry as a salmon culprit," says Kathy Creahan, of the county's natural resources division. "Our view is that forestry is about the best land use you can have for preserving fish."

"Working forest" also provides open space and recreation. Mike Munson of the Washington Forest Protection Association, a timber industry trade group, notes, "Only 2 percent of working forest is being harvested at any one time. That means 98 percent is green and growing."

And at least along the I-90 corridor, "the timber companies have started using practices that have less impact," says Nancy Keith.

THE NEW ENTHUSIASM for the timber biz does not extend across all terrain. Just last week, leaders of an ambitious new venture called the Cascades Conservation Partnership kicked off a three-year, $125 million campaign to rescue 75,000 acres of privately held central Cascades forestland from timber company ownership and preserve them as wilderness. These lands, which include roadless areas and tens of thousands of acres of old growth, are all under threat of being logged by Plum Creek, and the Partnership is counting on federal grants and private donors to save these
trees from the ax.

But the forests of the Cascade foothills (which, along I-90, begin near Issaquah) are far from virgin. "The majority of the land is on its second or third cutting," says the Sierra Club's Charlie Raines. The greatest threat facing these low-elevation habitats is not another tree harvest, but being plowed under for a Cucina!Cucina!.

The one million acres of foothills forests, which stretch across three counties, are "still very consolidated and very valuable from a wildlife perspective," says Kathy Creahan of Sims' staff. But as the Eastside explodes with new growth and fast money, "they are in serious jeopardy of being lost," argues King County Council Member Larry Phillips. "I don't think the public knows this."

As Raines observes, "there's not enough money--or enough willing sellers--to just buy it all and preserve it." So Raines, together with the Land Conservancy of Seattle and King County, is starting up an initiative to keep the foothills forested by taking advantage of their money-making potential. "We want to use timber revenues to help defray the cost of preservation," says Gene Duvernoy of the Conservancy.

The plan, which is still in its formative stage, is to recruit teams of investors who would put up the money for key properties, then get paid off over time with cash from the tree sales. The ventures would be run like a business, except without the fat profit margins--and aggressive chain saws--that industry giants like Weyerhaeuser are expected to deliver. "We think there are investors who would be willing to settle for less than Weyerhaeuser's 17 percent return," says Maryanne Tagney Jones.

The harvesting would be done according to the strictest environmental standards, with wider buffers around streams, conservative road building, and other sustainable methods. Raines is even hoping that these enlightened forest practices could be "certified" by watchdogs, allowing the timber to be sold at a premium.

The tree-trimming strategy "may not be the optimum choice for some people," says Raines. "But we're looking at a fairly pragmatic approach. The next generation may prefer certain areas to be parks. If we do our job right now, we give them that option. You can't turn Bellevue back into a park."

ANOTHER HIGH-POWERED environmental team, including Bill Pope and Larry Phillips, is getting started on a similar project, known as the Evergreen Forest Trust. They're planning to take advantage of a new, as-yet-unapproved financing tool, known as "community forestry bonds." These bonds would allow tree-huggers to work on a much bigger scale, freeing them from reliance on donor checks and political favors, and instead allowing them to tap directly into Wall Street via the trillion-dollar public market for tax-exempt debt.

"We think of that as a huge potential for capital," says Pope, who is also on the board of the Cascade Conservation Partnership and says this project could be even bigger. "This is part of the environmental movement growing up." The bonds would be paid off with timber revenues, but would carry a low interest rate, allowing landowners to practice "lower-impact forestry," Pope says.

However, the bonds require a special dispensation from Congress, because usually a nonprofit isn't allowed to turn around and sell assets it bought with tax-exempt financing. Republican Jennifer Dunn of Bellevue has sponsored legislation in the House, which appears to have wide support, but the bill has so far been ensnared in Congress's two-year battle over a tax cut.

King County Council Member Larry Phillips says the venture is forging ahead anyway. "In the last three months this has gotten real," says Phillips. "We're beginning to let major landowners know we're an interested party."

Whether the timber giants will want to join hands with these new environmental entrepreneurs is another question.

Activists, and county officials, are hoping that before the timber companies sell off another big chunk of land to make way for The Suburban Estates at Formerly Wooded Valley, they'll give the greens a chance to bid, or come up with some other preservation mechanism such as trading development rights between properties.

"We're saying to the companies: 'If your long-term plan is to sell it off, talk to us first,'" says Charlie Raines. "We're asking for time. We want to be brought in at a certain level of decision-making," says Maryanne Tagney Jones.

But Weyerhaeuser spokesman Frank Mendizabal sounds fairly lukewarm to this idea, noting that the real estate world tends to move a little faster than the public sector. "We always try to keep people apprised of our plans," says Mendizabal. "But we have to make business decisions and it depends on the business situation how much notice you can give people. Sometimes time is a factor."

Mendizabal says, "It's pretty apparent that Ron [Sims] has an interest in preserving green space. That's great. We're all for it." But he notes there are other factors at play. "This area's boomin'. When you look out in the future you see a population that continues to grow and the need for housing."

And Mendizabal expresses considerable skepticism that the new romance with "working forest" can endure, especially among the people who live near the woods. "Everyone thinks 'working forest' is wonderful," he says, "until the chain saws start up and the trucks start driving by."

Says Tagney Jones: "We need to educate people so they don't get hysterical about a cut."

from Steve Kurtz

Interesting Innovation Site - How Does Improv Teach Innovation?

As a long-time beneficiary of your exemplary innovation resources, I thought I should pass along the address of an organization that takes an interesting approach to 'surfacing' innovation:

Peter West



Editor in Chief

A responce to "Some Thoughts on Definitions of Innovation"

Editor, The Innovation Journal:

I enjoyed reading the "Some Thoughts on Definitions of Innovation",although I might not agree with all the points of view expressed there. I would like to send a copy of 'Innovation Strategy' for your attention. Using the analogy of geographic atlases, the article intends to shed light on the interaction between the nature of knowledge and the process of innovation in one hand, and role of classification, valuation and measurement of knowledge capitals in strengthening the innovation capabilities of businesses. This approach is indeed a continuation of a study on the "Mapping of Innovation" that I did for the federal department of Human Resources Development Canada back in 1994-97.

How we perceive innovation holds the key in the activities related to how to nurture and sustain innovation. And I agree with Dr. Stephen Klein that back in 1991 wrote "We need an interdisciplinary understanding of innovation, an understanding not created by current university disciplinary courses." (Kline S,1991, Styles of Innovation and their Cultural Basis, (Chemtech, August-October 1991).

On the role of public sector in the development of innovation in private sector (business), in 1994, I made a survey in some selected business in Etobicoke, ON. This survey indicated that:

"More than three quarters of surveyed business revealed that they have no documented innovation (technology) development plan. The same ratio marked that the processes of re-organizing their innovation (technology) development units and studying technological capabilities of their competitors are performed spontaneously and ad hoc. Deficiency in management of innovation (technology), covering the above subjects, is the greatest inhibitor of the innovation (technological) capability of the surveyed businesses. Indeed without an innovation strategy (articulating the structure, valuation and measurement of knowledge and innovation) businesses may rely mainly on their instinct to venture in ocean of innovation. Each business, however, needs to explore, and depict their own landscape of knowledge and innovation in a process that can be called 'cartography of mindsets' to let them to develop and share common visions among their stakeholders. Public sector programs are likely most helpful in assisting in the development of the structure of business innovation atlases. As Alice in the Wonderland explored long time ago, "if do not know where you are going, you will wind up somewhere else." This is likely applicable in the business innovation programs, as well!

I would be most pleased to have your comments.

Darius Mahdjoubi

Editor’s Response:

Thank you very much for your kind comment and interesting comments and article.
Is there something here we could potentially publish in the Innovation Journal?

Editor in Chief

Read more comments....




Updated April 18, 2004

Last updated: May 28 2015