Disruptive Innovation - Some pointers

I've recently begun to get more involved in the area of disruptive social innovation, to a large extent because that's exactly what the Urban Survival Project is all about. Anyway, innovation being the buzzword of the moment, is now being used in so many contexts that it's going the way of most jargon; i.e. no one's entirely sure exactly what it's supposed to mean. "Disruptive Innovation" as a term only complicates the matter and makes even less sense. So here's a few notes to help demystify Disruptive Innovation, thanks to Rhea who got me talking about it the other night.

To start with, here's an excerpt from a post I'd written a short while ago around disruptive social innovation. "Disruptive innovation is about creating something that fundamentally shifts the way things are done. Using analogies from Systems Thinking, the whole world is a complex web of interactions that localise around tightly linked processes that are all loosely linked to other localised processes. Disrupting the norm in one small area then, can have a follow on effect to the way the whole world works."

The guy who's written the most around Disruptive Innovation is Clayton Christensen. Here's a snapshot of his model.

You can also preview some of his books on Google Books. I think the latest one is called Seeing What's Next

Other concepts worth looking at in relation to disruptive innovation are Design Thinking and some of the principles behind User Centred Design. I'll cover these a bit more in a future post.

Happy reading :)

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