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Innovation is Not a Coincidence

From the FAZ supplement ‘technologies of the future’, by Michael Gneuss:

“Which indicators allow us to actually recognize which company is more innovative than others?  From scholars there is no clear answer to this question. One could refer to the expenses on research and development as an indicator. But then Apple would not be on the top of the list. Other companies have much higher budgets. But market success tells a different story: With the iPhone and iPads Apple, indeed, set innovative trends. The number of patent applications could be another indicator that allows identifying innovative companies, but even then would Apple not be at the top. The example shows that innovation does not always need to be linked to groundbreaking inventions. With the iPhone, Apple has put together technologies that were previously known to create an innovative product. […]

Tatjana Samsonowa, managing director of the International Institute for Research performance Management (IPERF) stresses the need for business leaders to be committed to research and development and to embed a culture of innovation. “Innovation is not a coincidence,” says Samsonowa. Researchers also need open spaces. “They need time, space and information—but also clear goals in the form of a research agenda, which should always be adapted to the company’s goals.”

Read the full article (German, PDF)