The Collaborative Creation of Christmas

The creation of Christmas, the secular holiday, is a story of collaborative creativity. Christmas trees, giving gifts, Santa–all emerged from a distributed social process. It’s a story about history and culture; about the industrial revolution and the family; and about how our conceptions of childhood have changed. It’s a story of social innovation. Some older… Read More The Collaborative Creation of Christmas

The Economist Shouts: “Set Innovation Free!”

The cover story of this influential British magazine is “Set Innovation Free!”* The subtitle says what they really mean: Time to fix the patent system. In this blog, I’ve argued that the current patent regime retards overall innovation. It’s not aligned with empirical studies of creativity research. Patents are awarded to a single entity, as if… Read More The Economist Shouts: “Set Innovation Free!”

Debra Kaye’s New Book, Red Thread Thinking

I really enjoyed Debra Kaye’s new book about entrepreneurship and innovation, Red Thread Thinking.  Kaye is what I would call a marketing expert, but nowadays the trendier more correct term for marketing is “brand strategy”. She’s an expert on consumer product trends, and she’s consulted for Apple, Colgate, McDonalds, American Express, you name it–she is… Read More Debra Kaye’s New Book, Red Thread Thinking

Changing Places

When workers change departments for a short time–for example, shadowing another employee in a totally different part of the organization–it enhances the innovation potential of the entire organization. That’s because it results in more “weak links” throughout the organization’s social network. And from research, we know that creativity is more likely to result when information… Read More Changing Places