How to get a good idea? Take a good idea from outside your group and bring it in. The quote is from Ronald Burt, U Chicago Graduate School of Business. Some resources and links:
danah boyd's 2004 blog post on Ronald Burt, Structural Holes and Creativity.
NY Times article Where to get a good idea: steal it from outside your group. ($$)
Dale Hunscher writes about Open Source Science and how ideas from open source software development can spur scientific innovation. He quotes an Harvard Business School Working Knowledge interview with Karim Lakhani which says in part
"Innovations happen at the intersection of disciplines. People have talked about that a lot and I think we're providing some systematic evidence now with this study," Lakhani says.
ok, more - on the topic of user-driven technical invention (where the "outsiders" are the customers and the "insiders" are the company) - from the manifesto of Lakhani's userinnovation web community
Empirical research is finding that users rather than manufacturers are the actual developers of many or most new products and services – and that they are a major locus of innovative activity in the economy. This finding opens up new questions and avenues for exploration in fields ranging from economics to management of technology to organizational behaviour to marketing research. Examples are patterns in innovation by users, characteristics of innovating users, design of a user-centered innovation process, economics of a distributed innovation process that includes users as innovators, and social welfare implications of innovations by users.
(the site is currently throwing errors, but what a great idea...)
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