How the Ivy League is Killing Innovation

by Mitch Ditkoff

How the Ivy League is Killing InnovationHere’s a wonderful article, just published in Bloomberg Business Week that raises a very curious paradox — why academics are teaching innovation.

Authors G. Michael Maddock and Raphael Louis Viton state their case clearly, cleanly, and with just enough of an edge to draw blood.

“Process-driven cultures love process-driven experts. Organizations, just like people, do what makes them feel strong, and nothing makes mature, process-driven companies feel stronger than having a template for doing anything (even if having a completely buttoned-down-ain’t-no-exceptions-allowed template for innovation seems oxymoronic on its face).

Need innovation? Simply call in a PhD with a bow tie and trademarked process and watch your innovation portfolio grow. Right? Nope.”

If you are a professor and find Maddock and Viton’s article objectionable, speak up! Let them know what you think — and why. Maybe you’re the one who’s found a way to teach innovation in a novel, cut-to-the-chase, non-academic way. I know there are some of you out there. Yes?

If you are a high roller in a corporation looking for the “secret innovation sauce,” I invite you to read their article before reaching out to academia for your next keynote speaker.


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Mitch DitkoffMitch Ditkoff is the Co-Founder and President of Idea Champions and the author of “Awake at the Wheel”, as well as the very popular Heart of Innovation blog.

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