Tag Archives: Science

Companies Are Failing To Get Value From Innovation

Innovation is something that everyone says they want to do, but it seems increasingly clear that this desire is often rather superficial.  For instance, recently I wrote about a new study from Harvard Business School showing that innovation is rarely a top priority for executives.  Indeed, just 30% placed it in their top 3 issues to focus on in the ...

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Here’s Why It’s So Hard It’s So Hard To Bring Science To Market

It seems like every day we see or hear about a breakthrough new discovery that will change everything. Some, like perovskites in solar cells and CRISPR are improvements on existing technologies. Others, like quantum computing and graphene promise to open up new horizons encompassing many applications. Nevertheless, we are still waiting for a true market impact. Quantum computing and graphene ...

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How Universities Support Recombinative Innovation

The importance of recombination is something I’ve touched upon numerous times over the years.  Indeed, research suggests that innovations today are much more likely to apply an existing innovation in new ways than to invent something truly unique. The study highlights that 40% of all patents submitted throughout the history of the USPTO are refinements of existing works.  What is ...

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Innovate Like a (Monarch) Butterfly

I spent some time last year visiting a butterfly sanctuary in the cloud forest near Mashpi, Ecuador.  In this sanctuary, local support staff have identified 300 species of butterflies and have been able to reproduce 50 of them in a research facility referred to as the Life Center, which is basically a large, screened-in habitat for butterflies.  I watched intently ...

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Is It Time To Rethink The Scientific Method?

Designing an airplane has long been an exercise in tradeoffs. A larger airplane with more powerful engines can hold more people and go farther, but is costlier to run. A smaller one is more cost efficient, but lacks capacity. For decades, these have been nearly inviolable constraints that manufacturers just had to live with. Boeing’s new 787 Dreamliner is different. ...

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A New Breed of Innovation

A New Breed Of Innovation

By the mid-1980’s, the American semiconductor industry seemed like it was doomed. Although US firms had pioneered and dominated the technology for decades, they were now getting pummeled by cheaper Japanese imports. Much like cars and electronics, microchips seemed destined to become another symbol of American decline. The dire outlook had serious ramifications for both US competitiveness and national security. ...

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