Innovation ecosystems extend beyond startups to research and expert networks, which provide an excellent pipeline for futuristic and disruptive startups. Some examples include Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Ohio University, and Oregon State University, that support everything from technology development and commercialization to sustainability and entrepreneurship. Of course, the expected players are also participating: MIT is currently partnering with more than 700 companies (including Boeing, DuPont, Ford and Google) on innovation projects, while Stanford University is actively engaging industry to engineering to help solve real world problems. . Ajay Bhaskar of Wipro proposes three steps to tap into a powerful engine of innovation.
Traditionally, companies have relied on large technology partners who provide systems, software and professional services as solutions tailored to their needs. Such partnerships are essential because they allow companies to leverage valuable expertise, and companies will increasingly rely on a network of many different stakeholders for all kinds of purposes, including as a source. innovation.
As the pace of innovation and disruption increases, businesses are beset by competition from all sides. Today, a revolutionary startup like Uber or Airbnb can redefine an entire industry virtually overnight, and large, established companies must defend their positions and their intellectual property by learning how to create their own innovation ecosystems. This is not an easy task for large forestry companies, but the very survival of the company may depend on it.
Capitalize on an efficient ecosystem
Innovation ecosystems can provide huge benefits in almost any industry, but they have the greatest impact in the sectors that change the most rapidly. Take cybersecurity, where there is a 24/7 arms race between hackers and the companies they seek to steal. In most recent cyberattacks in the United States, businesses and even local governments have had no choice but to pay ransoms so they can get back to business as quickly as possible. While solutions and technologies exist to combat this persistent threat, many of them are innovative and disruptive startups.
Artificial intelligence is another area where rapid evolution makes innovation ecosystems essential. Governments around the world are fining financial institutions for failing to detect the use of their systems by human traffickers, arms dealers, drug dealers and terrorist groups. And despite a large market for compliance solutions, banks continue to break the rules.
In Europe, for example, banks spend $ 20 billion annually on anti-money laundering (AML) measures, but 90% of European banks were fined between 2009 and 2019. ‘an effective innovation ecosystem can harness the latest developments in AI and effectively apply the technology to anti-money laundering initiatives. With better solutions helping an institution incur fewer fines, it can gain a serious competitive advantage.
Innovation ecosystems extend beyond startups to research and expert networks, which provide an excellent pipeline for futuristic and disruptive startups. Vanderbilt University of Nashville, Ohio University and Oregon State University are a few examples emerging from universities and research labs, which support all activities, from technology development and research to marketing to sustainability and entrepreneurship. Of course, the expected players are also participating: MIT is currently in partnership with more than 700 companies (including Boeing, DuPont, Ford and Google) on innovation projects, while Stanford University actively solicits the industry to engineering to help solve real world problems. The list is long.
The benefits of innovation ecosystems are clear, but their creation does not always come naturally to the company. Executives of large companies often have reservations about engaging small organizations like startups that have not been proven successful and lack financial security. To overcome the most common obstacles and tap into a powerful engine of innovation, follow these three steps:
- Look for partners who have the innovation ecosystem agenda as a key priority.
Companies work with countless partners, and some of them are well equipped to play a key role in the search for innovation. When a company uses a partner that prioritizes an innovation ecosystem program, it has access to all of that partner’s knowledge and innovation networks. With this in mind, the presence of mature innovation ecosystems should be a key factor when selecting potential partners for a wide variety of services.
- Access cutting-edge solutions through venture capital branches
Many companies have venture capital branches that invest in startups as strategic investors, but focusing specifically on areas very close to the business can help embed this innovation into core businesses and platforms. that the company is building. These efforts are often transformational because they can generate new value for clients in much less time and because the approach has been validated time and time again in industries such as technology and finance. A faster approach for businesses is to partner with companies that have active corporate activities with the aim of bringing cutting edge solutions to businesses, getting the most out of the partner and the startup.
- Look for ways to form partnerships with research networks.
Major innovations (especially in areas where the problems are large and complex) are underway in the laboratories of universities and research institutes around the world, and they could also benefit from a partner company that would bring the statement of customer problem and the data needed to better understand the problem. When the research team comes up with a new approach, the business or client can proof-of-concept and send real feedback to the research team that helps them refine and triangulate a solution that works with the partner and l ‘business.
Ideas and innovations are like living organisms, and they need the right ecosystem to grow and thrive. When a business populates the landscape with experienced partners, industry experts, academics, researchers, etc., it creates an environment where innovation can flourish, benefiting both the business and its people. customers in countless ways.
Written by Ajay Bhaskar.
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