Tapping into the entrepreneurship/stew model of innovation

I’ve often made the point at innovation is not a linear process. It does not necessarily flow from bench science to new product. In what I’ve called the stew pot model of innovation, entrepreneurs reach out to find the technologies and other resources they need to fulfill their vision. A little bit of this, a little bit of that, combined with all this other stuff — and you have entrepreneurial stew.
For this process to work, however, means that entrepreneurs need to be able to find the technologies they need as much as the technologies need to find the entrepreneurs. In part, the open innovation helps by connected companies with innovative ideas and new technologies. Technology brokers play a similar role. So here is another version, from a recent Technology Review article “Can Crowdsourcing Bring Unused Patents Back from the Dead?” In this case, the crowd is asked to find what problems the technology could be used for.
As such, this model won’t revolutionize the innovation process. But it will help make more connections. And connections drive the process.

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