Types of Innovation

Creativity can be defined as problem identification and idea generation whilst innovation can be defined as idea selection, development and commercialisation.

There are other useful definitions in this field, for example, creativity can be defined as consisting of a number of ideas, a number of diverse ideas and a number of novel ideas.

There are distinct processes that enhance problem identification and idea generation and, similarly, distinct processes that enhance idea selection, development and commercialisation. Whilst there is no sure fire route to commercial success, these processes improve the probability that good ideas will be generated and selected and that investment in developing and commercialising those ideas will not be wasted.

Types of Innovation

Tidd et al (2005) argue that there are four types of innovation; consequently the innovator has four pathways to investigate when searching for good ideas:

a) Product Innovation ? new products or improvements on products. The new Mini or the updated VX Beetle, new models of mobile phones and so on.

b) Process Innovation ? where some part of the process is improved to bring benefit. Just in Time is a good example.

c) Positioning Innovation ? Lucozade used to be a medicinal drink but the was repositioned as a sports drink.

d) Paradigm Innovation ? where major shifts in thinking cause change. During the time of the expensive mainframe, Bill Gates and others aimed to provide a home computer for everyone.

These and other topics are covered in depth in the MBA dissertation on Managing Creativity & Innovation, which can be purchased (along with an Innovation Bible, Creativity and Innovation DIY Audit, Good Idea Generator Software and Power Point Presentation) from http://www.managing-creativity.com/

You can also receive a regular, free newsletter by entering your email address at this site.

Kal Bishop, MBA

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