I have noted a shift over the last couple of years. It used to be that the most-often asked questions on open innovation evolved around intellectual property rights. How can we do open innovation and still protect our intellectual property? Big question!!!
This is still a very important issue, but I have noticed that the questions are asked less frequently and the issue is no longer one of the main topics in the presentations you hear from corporate people presenting at conferences. The reason for the latter is that the leading companies understand that business needs to become before legal issues and they have gained experience in making this happen.
A few things on this include that legal departments at these leading companies have been turned around. They now think offense rather than defense. “Yes, there will be challenges on this case, but there are also opportunities. Let’s find a way to work around the challenges.” Another thing is that they have developed a range a simple documents that better allows them to engage with potential innovation partners. These simple documents allow them to focus on the opportunities before they need to look into the more complex legal issues.
I think this is a great development that shows the ongoing maturity of open innovation. What do you think? Do you agree?
You should also check out the work of Jackie Hutter, who is one of the few, frequent bloggers on this topic.
Stefan Lindegaard is a speaker, network facilitator and strategic advisor who focus on the topics of open innovation, intrapreneurship and how to identify and develop the people who drive innovation