The following Harvard Business School paper of 33 pages "The Evolution of Science-
Based Business: Innovating
How We Innovate"
describes how innovation has always required creating new intangible capital (IC) which includes both new products or services but also a new form of organization for generation and delivery especially in science-based business such as those in biosciences. The innovation process must discover and validate the new IC, as targeted market/brand, products and services and the business model. The normal linear "waterfall" process is not effective in this expanded discovery and validation which must be iterative in the front-end of innovation. However, the fourth generation (4G) of innovation theory and practice does provide the right iterative process for discovery and validation.
The beginning of the paper states "Alfred Chandler taught us that organizational innovation and technological innovation are equal partners in the process of economic growth. Indeed, one often requires the other."
In 4G, organizational and technological innovation is driven by new capabilities (people with knowledge, tools, technology and processes) plus the revised organization (architecture) of that capability which includes new business models, new platforms, new partnerships and new supply and new distribution chains. Open innovation is one way to augment the acquisition of new capabilities.
The attached HBS paper is a bit long, but a very interesting read!
Thanks for sharing it, William.
Abhijit - The linear model of innovation assumed by this paper is false and ineffective. The linear model has a linear process that begins with invention of technology and a prototype in R&D followed by an attempt to find a a market, customers and a profitable business model for commercialization. Steve Blank (at Stanford and for NSF iCorps) has augmented the linear model after invention in R&D with a 4G innovation iterative process to find a market, customers and a profitable business model. That's still the linear model. The best strategy and innovation model is nonlinear that begins with finding a core problem with 4G methodology that constrains productivity, quality and cost in industries or markets and then continues to apply the 4G methodology and process to iteratively and simultaneously find and validate the market, the customers, the business model and the technology in a package of products and services offered by a collection of companies that 4G calls a "galaxy" and is intended to be a new dominant design as a solution. Apple with its partners is a 4G "galaxy".
William, what you are saying makes sense. If there is a paper that compares the linear model of innovation to the 4G model that you can share here, it will help my understanding further.
You might also want to read papers and a book by G. Pascal Zachary.
Zachary rejects the linear model of innovation and explains his reasons.
He wrote a book about Vannevar Bush, science chief for FDR in WWII, who essentially created the linear model after WWII that led to the creation of the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the use of the linear model as a justification to fund research at universities and National Laboratories.
My statement that Bush created the linear model is contested by Godin in his paper,
and Godin's paper is referenced by Ken Jarboe on his website
Most experts in innovation now say the linear model is ineffective and should be replaced with a nonlinear model with an iterative process at the core and feedback loops.