2015/07/24

«Middle school students learn to use creativity through ‘Innovation, Design and Robotics’ program»



Holly Duchmann: The Acadiana Advocate



«It took 11-year-old Faris Khattack two attempts before he mastered control of his robot.

»His fist pumped the air amid cheers from the other students after his programmed Lego reached the buoy, picked it up, then brought it back to him.

»The middle school students had gathered in a classroom at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, where they were taking part this week in the “Innovation, Design and Robotics” program. On Wednesday, the classroom became the “Marsh Island Research Area,” and after his success at buoy retrieval, Faris scooped his robot up and programmed it for another mission.

»“It’s pretty advanced what they’re doing,” said Douglas Williams, a professor in the college of education at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, where the five-day camp is being held.

»The camp has four parts: coding, design challenges, robotics and biomimicry. Williams designed the activities and curriculum the students are working on this week.

»“When we designed it, we really wanted to make the camp about innovation,” Williams said. “So all the activities we’re doing are about them creating, designing, inventing and building things.”

»Students learn computer coding, which is being done through code.org, a website for a nonprofit firm that offers interactive activities for students that teach basic concepts of the process.

»“Through little games where you’re moving the angry bird around through a maze to jump and get the pig, they’re actually learning the same concepts I learned in computer science when I was a freshman (in college),” Williams said. “It’s a very well-designed curriculum, and it’s about 15 to 20 hours of curriculum where they’re learning how to do coding.”

»The students also conducted research on biomimicry and will use the technology for their own project.

The students also conducted research on biomimicry and will use the technology for their own project.

»“We wanted to give them a chance to have their own thoughts and invent something,” Williams said. “So biomimicry is looking to nature for inspiration because nature has been solving the same problems we have for 3.8 billion years.

»“So with biomimicry, they pick some problem they want to work on ... cancer, collecting water in a dry climate, things like that.”

»Heather Latiolas, a 15-year-old Judice Middle School student, said she feels inspired when working with other young teens.

»“So far, my favorite part of this camp is the robotics part,” said Heather, who wants to attend the Air Force Academy and learn air traffic control.

»Zayne Abdul-Jabbar also liked the robotics part of the camp.

»“You can just build a robot out of Legos, and it’s really cool,” the 13-year-old Lafayette Middle School student said. “You can make something out of nothing, and it’s awesome.”

»He became interested in robotics after viewing the “Transformers” films and is considering robotics as his career path.

»The mentors who supervised the students at the camp are education majors or recent graduates of UL-Lafayette. The experience gave some of them their first taste of teaching.

»“It’s been really beneficial (working here,)” said Kimberly Sullivan, a spring graduate of UL-Lafayette in elementary education. “We’ve had a lot of the kids come up to us and say ‘Wow, like, I never thought I was going to go to college. This makes me want to go.’

»“So it’s exciting to see that because a lot of them didn’t even think they had that option,” Sullivan said. “Opening that door to them and making them realize that there’s so much more out there than what they’re used to, it’s the best part by far.”

»The camp at UL-Lafayette was funded by Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs, or GEAR UP — which awarded the Lafayette Parish School System a total of $1.9 million, according to the U.S. Department of Education website.

»GEAR UP aims to prepare more low-income students to enter college and succeed. The program provides six-year grants to states to assist low-income middle and high schools. GEAR UP funds also are used to award college scholarships to low-income students. For this camp, Lafayette Parish School System and GEAR UP partnered with the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

»“School is so structured now,” Williams said. “You study this, memorize that and then give it back for the test. This is really about them being creative and applying and having their own thoughts about what they want to study.”»





The innovation execution

2015/07/23

«State-of-the-art innovation centre planned for former Wellington Street School»



Don Biggs. St. Thomas Times-Journal



«The wheels are in motion to open the proposed innovation centre at the former Wellington Street School.

»A partnership between the Thames Valley District School Board, City of St. Thomas and the St. Thomas Public Library, the Innovation Centre will be a state-of-the-art facility with leading edge technology.

» The former school was renovated through the financial support of the Dorothy Palmer Estate to house a campus of Algoma University which closed this spring and it's hoped that the facility will re-open to the public in early 2016.

»However, in order to get the ball rolling a project development specialist will be hired on a contractual basis to talk with local stakeholders about the potential of the site.

»“Now that the building has been renovated it is more or less sitting there unoccupied and the city, library and school board partnered thinking it would be a really fantastic space for an innovation centre,” said Sarah Macintyre, systems and support services librarian with the St. Thomas Public Library.

»“We're hoping to have (a project development specialist) in place by the end of August.”

»According to Macintyre, once the facility is operational, students would use the centre during the day and be open to the general public at night and during weekends.

»“It is still in its infancy and we don't know what it will look like, but that is what makes it so exciting,” she noted. “We want an individual who sees our vision and take the necessary steps to make it happen, build a business case and help get the project off the ground for us.”

We want an individual who sees our vision and take the necessary steps to make it happen, build a business case and help get the project off the ground for us.

»There are several private maker spaces throughout Southwestern Ontario, as well similar facilities located in public libraries and schools. However, the innovation centre in St. Thomas would be a blend of all three of those sectors.

»“So, we would kind of be running into unchartered territory, as it will be a centre unlike any other,” stressed Macintyre.

»The innovation centre will house more and higher quality 3-D printers than the one at the library and will also utilize other cutting-edge technology. People could learn such things as web design, create prototypes, explore robotics or make videos.

»“We are really excited to see where it leads us,” she said.

»Interested individuals can check out the job posting for the project development specialist at www.stthomas.ca or at www.stthomaspubliclibrary.ca.»





An innovation

2015/07/22

«6 Unusual Habits of Exceptionally Creative People»



Travis Bradberry: Pulse



«I expend a huge amount of my time and energy writing books and articles and working to keep my company innovative. I’ve developed an obsession with some of history’s most creative minds in the hope that I might learn some tricks to expand my own creative productivity.

»Some of the things I’ve learned are more useful than others, and some are simply too weird to try.

»Steve Jobs, for example, routinely sat on toilets, dangling his bare feet in the water while he came up with new ideas, and Yoshiro Nakamatsu (inventor of the floppy disc) would dive deep under water until his brain was deprived of oxygen, then write his ideas on an underwater sticky pad.

»Weird ideas aside, I’ve developed a pretty good understanding of the habits of some of history’s most creative minds. There’s enough commonality between different people that I’ve distilled their habits into strategies that anyone can follow.

»Six of these strategies stand out because they have the power to change the way you think about creativity. Give them a try, and you’ll reach new levels of creative productivity.


»1. Wake Up Early

»Not all creative minds are morning people. Franz Kafka routinely stayed up all night writing, and William Styron (author of Sophie’s Choice, among other best sellers) woke up at noon every day and considered his “morning” routine to be staying in bed for another hour to think.

»However, early risers make up the clear majority of creative thinkers. The list of creative early risers ranges from Benjamin Franklin to Howard Schultz to Ernest Hemmingway, though they didn’t all wake up early for the same reasons. Ben Franklin woke up early to plan out his day, while Schultz uses the time to send motivational emails to his employees. For many creative people, waking up early is a way to avoid distractions. Ernest Hemingway woke up at 5 a.m. every day to begin writing. He said, “There is no one to disturb you and it is cool and cold and you come to your work and warm as you write.”

»The trick to making getting up early stick is to do it every day and avoid naps—no matter how tired you feel. Eventually, you will start going to bed earlier to make up for the lost sleep. This can make for a couple of groggy days at first, but you’ll adjust quickly, and before you know it, you’ll join the ranks of creative early risers.


»2. Exercise Frequently

»There’s plenty of evidence pointing to the benefits of exercise for creativity. Feeling good physically gets you in the right mood to focus and be productive. Exercise also forces you to have disconnected time (it’s tough to text or email while working out), and this allows you to reflect on whatever it is you’re working on. In a Stanford study, 90% of people were more creative after they exercised.

»It’s no surprise that so many creative and successful people built exercise into their daily routines. Kurt Vonnegut took walks into the nearby town, swam laps, and did push-ups and sit-ups, Richard Branson runs every morning, and composers Beethoven and Tchaikovsky both walked daily.


»3. Stick to a Strict Schedule

»It’s a common misconception that in order to be creative, one must live life on a whim with no structure and no sense of need to do anything, but the habits of highly successful and creative people suggest otherwise. In fact, most creative minds schedule their days rigorously. Psychologist William James described the impact of a schedule on creativity, saying that only by having a schedule can we “free our minds to advance to really interesting fields of action.”


»4. Keep Your Day Job

»Creativity flourishes when you’re creating for yourself and no one else. Creativity becomes more difficult when your livelihood depends upon what you create (and you begin to think too much about what your audience will think of your product). Perhaps this is why so many successful and creative people held on to their day jobs. Many of them, like Stephen King, who was a schoolteacher, produced their breakout (and, in King’s case, what many consider his very best) work while they still held a 9 to 5.

»Day jobs provide more than the much-needed financial security to create freely. They also add structure to your day that can make your creative time a wonderful release. The list of successful, creative minds who kept their day jobs is a long one. Some notable individuals include Jacob Arabo, who started designing his own jewelry while working in a jewelry shop; William Faulkner, who worked in a power plant while writing As I Lay Dying; and musician Philip Glass, who worked as a plumber.


Creativity becomes more difficult when your livelihood depends upon what you create (and you begin to think too much about what your audience will think of your product). Perhaps this is why so many successful and creative people held on to their day jobs.

»5. Learn to Work Anywhere, Anytime

»A lot of people work in only one place, believing it’s practically impossible for them to get anything done anywhere else. Staying in one place is actually a crutch; studies show that changing environments is beneficial to productivity and creativity. E.B. White, author of Charlotte’s Web, said it well: “A writer who waits for ideal conditions under which to work will die without putting a word on paper.” The same is true for any type of creative work. If you keep waiting until you are in the perfect place at the ideal time, the time will never come.

»Steve Jobs started Apple in his mom’s garage, and JK Rowling wrote the first ideas for Harry Potter on a napkin on a train. When you have a creative idea, don’t wait—put it into action as soon as you can. Recording that spark of creativity may very well be the foundation of something great.


»6. Learn That Creative Blocks Are Just Procrastination

»As long as your heart is still beating, you have the ability to come up with new ideas and execute them. They may not always be great ones, but the greatest enemy of creativity is inactivity.

»Author Jodi Picoult summarized creative blocks perfectly: “I don’t believe in writer’s block. Think about it—when you were blocked in college and had to write a paper, didn’t it always manage to fix itself the night before the paper was due? Writer’s block is having too much time on your hands. If you have a limited amount of time to write, you just sit down and do it. You might not write well every day, but you can always edit a bad page. You can’t edit a blank page.”

»Picoult’s comment describes all creative activity—the only way to stay creative is to keep moving forward.


»Bringing It All Together

»In my experience, you must get intentional about your creativity if you want it to flourish. Give these six strategies a try to see what they can do for you.»





An innovator

2015/07/21

«Innovation vital to meet public sector challenges, says CIPFA president»



Vivienne Russell. Public Finance magazine



«CIPFA (Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy) members need to innovate in order to face up to unprecedented economic and policy challenges, incoming president John Matheson told the annual conference.

»Matheson, who is the Scottish Government’s director of health finance, e-health and analytics, highlighted that recent events in the eurozone were keeping everyone second-guessing when the next downturn or crisis in the economy would be.

»The ageing population, heightened terrorism and cyber crime risks, and diminishing levels of public trust in government institution were also emerging issues that needed to be faced up to.

The ageing population, heightened terrorism and cyber crime risks, and diminishing levels of public trust in government institution were also emerging issues that needed to be faced up to.

»“In the light of this risk, much of which is known and certain, as public servants and especially financial managers we must focus on developing new ideas and innovative responses to meet these challenges, and mitigate risk… Not at some point in the future, but now.”

»The CIPFA conference, he said, would be hearing from many public service innovators from across the UK.

»Elsewhere in his speech, Matheson stressed the need to focus on health rather than illness and the need to take a “whole-systems” approach.

»“If we are to avoid pumping ever-greater quantities of our scarce public resources into ever-more costly remedial care, it is essential we adopt an approach which puts equal emphasis on health promotion and health improvement not just from within the health budget but also from investing in services such as housing, education and opportunities for employment and justice,” the president told delegates.

»He concluded by noting the rising age profile of CIPFA members and the need to ensure the profession remained attractive to younger people. Skills such as big data interpretation and analytics for modeling service design were becoming increasingly important.

»“We must make [the next few years] an absolute priority to encourage in the future generation and demonstrate ourselves a sense of energy, resilience and optimism,” Matheson said.»





Public Administration and innovation

2015/07/20

«Newsletter L&I» (n.º 61, 2015-07-20)




Administração Pública e inovação | Administración Pública e innovación |
Administration Publique et innovation | Public Administration and innovation

Um inovador | Un innovador | Un innovateur | An innovator

Uma inovação | Una innovación | Une innovation | An innovation

A execução da inovaçao | La ejecución de la innovación | L’exécution de l’innovation |
The innovation execution



Liderar Inovando (BR)

«Plano de Inovação do TCE Ceará é lançado com palestra de Roberto Meizi Agune» [web] [intro]
«Cooperativismo no novo cenário tecnológico bancário» [web] [intro]
«A Inovação no Processo de Desenvolvimento de Produtos» [web] [intro]
«Empreender para quê?» [web] [intro]

Liderar Inovando (PT)

«Projecto “A nossa escola cuia”: Angola poderá contar com escolas pré-fabricadas com tecnologia blockhaus» [web] [intro]
«Lições de uma Vida Com Sentido» [web] [intro]
«A PT no centro do mercado televisivo» [web] [intro]
«Departamentos TI das empresas portuguesas só dedicam 9 minutos por dia à inovação» [web] [intro]

Liderar Innovando (ES)

«Innovación pública y capital humano científico» [web] [intro]
«Diez características del innovador» [web] [intro]
«Uruguay destaca “su carácter innovador” durante cumbre entre Comunidad de Estados Latinoamericanos y Caribeños (CELAC) y Unión Europea (UE)» [web] [intro]
«México y Francia firman 23 acuerdos de investigación e innovación» [web] [intro]

Mener avec Innovation (FR)

«La Société Nationale des Chemins de fer Français muscle sa culture de la sécurité» [web] [intro]
«Namwali Serpell, zambienne, lauréate et généreuse» [web] [intro]
«Des chercheurs de Montpellier découvrent une bactérie "intelligente" pour détecter des maladies» [web] [intro]
«Démystifier la tradition» [web] [intro]

Leadership and Innovation (EN)

«Wichita State is getting a $1 million federal grant for roads and water lines to support the first building at the new innovation campus» [web] [intro]
«Companies with boards full of white men are unlikely to be innovative» [web] [intro]
«Global Innovation Exchange: A new kind of investment in higher ed» [web] [intro]
«Nairobi Innovation Week» [web] [intro]

Licencia Creative Commons Licencia Creative Commons
Atribución-NoComercial 4.0 Internacional








2015/07/10

«Nairobi Innovation Week»



University of Nairobi



«Kenya’s capacity to compete in the global market greatly depends on the ability of her people to innovate and apply the relevant technology for growth and development. Kenya has put innovation at the centre of its development strategy primarily through Vision 2030 as well as through legislation such as the Science, Technology and Innovation Act, which mandates that R&D spending be doubled to 2% of the GDP. Though the government and more particularly the University have put efforts into fostering innovations, many of the innovations developed are not known to the public. It is in this line that C4DLab, an innovation hub at the University of Nairobi which aims to enhance innovation in the University and in the country wishes to host a series of activities to celebrate technology and innovation through an innovation week in the second half of 2015.

» The innovation week, which would be transformed into a signature annual event, would bring together partners from government, private sector, development partners and research centers with an aim of providing a platform for show-casing and encouraging innovation over and above networking and sharing knowledge.



»Objectives

»• To show case/exhibit and recognize innovations by researchers, incubatees (C4Dlab and beyond), private companies.

»• To create a platform for presentation of academic papers, innovation illustrations and case studies focused on research and innovation.

»• To champion policy discussions on innovation in Kenya.


»The event will comprise keynote speeches in plenary sessions, policy discussions, paper and case study presentations, roundtable discussions and exhibition of inventions and innovations by various players in the industry.



The lab works with the entire university community, with a reach to a community of more than 50,000 people, including faculty, students, and staff.

»Benefits and Impact

»• Engage with policy makers on the growth and support of the innovation ecosystem in Kenya.

»• Create linkages between the diversity of stakeholders in the industry.

»• Learn about existing innovations and inventions that benefit others.

»• Discuss how local international collaboration in applied research can be supported by private and public innovation facilitators.

»• Increase the visibility of innovators, C4Dlab, the University and partners.



»C4Dlab

»C4DLab is a prototyping and innovative startup incubation lab at the School of Computing & Informatics, University of Nairobi. This lab was founded in 2013, as the first phase of a bigger complex CC4D (Center of Computing for Development) to be built at the school.

»The lab works with the entire university community, with a reach to a community of more than 50,000 people, including faculty, students, and staff.


»Startup Incubation

»We launched our incubation late in 2013 and received a total of 24 applicants. Currently, our space has a capacity of taking 8 startups, and the rest will be engaged on the virtual incubation model. The first lot of 8 startups will begin operating officially from the lab in March 2014.


»Capacity Building & Training

»We organize various events in form of seminars, bootcamps, workshops, etc geared towards building the capacity for the university community to easily innovate.

»We have also scheduled short courses, particularly cyber security, cloud computing, innovation studies, etc; which will be offered from the second quarter of 2014.


»Prototyping

»We also engage in building our own in-house products. Last year, we built 9 prototypes of very innovative products. Notably among them were Games for Learning (G4L), which are mainly targeting primary school kids.»





The innovation execution

2015/07/09

«Global Innovation Exchange: A new kind of investment in higher ed»



Emma Peters: Yahoo Finance



«Last week, Microsoft (MSFT) announced its $40 million contribution to the Global Innovation Exchange (GIX), “a new model of learning” that partners the tech behemoth with the University of Washington and the “MIT of China,” Tsinghua University.

»GIX, set to open next year, will be a graduate school with an aim to train students to solve real-world technology, design and entrepreneurship challenges through “project-based learning.”

»Students who finish the program will get a master’s degree in technology innovation and, it’s hoped, a crash course in startup culture. The goal is to help students learn how to navigate the tech world better than traditional academia does now.

»The institute will be based in Bellevue, Wash., just east of Seattle and only 10 miles from the University of Washington’s campus.

»Ann Kirschner, the dean of the Macaulay Honors College at CUNY and a proponent of academic innovation, praised GIX as a “a giant step forward” in the largely static realm of higher education, explaining that it is the first institution of its kind in more than one way.

»It’s the first time a Chinese academic institution has put down roots on U.S. soil. The inverse relationship, with American universities expanding their physical presence abroad— like NYU Abu Dhabi or Georgetown’s Qatar campus — is more common, says Vikram Jandhyala, vice provost for innovation at the University of Washington.

»GIX is a good opportunity for American students to learn about the Chinese mindset, he said. While Americans are known for bold and risky choices in the tech industry, the Chinese have a reputation for taking a slower, more cautious approach, thinking more about the long term.


»The Microsoft connection

»The other innovative aspect of the GIX partnership is its corporate connection. Microsoft, based in Redmond, Wash., hopes to bolster the tech economy in the Pacific Northwest with its financial contribution. The greater Seattle area is also home to web retail giant Amazon.com (AMZN).

»The ultimate goal is to create the same sort of symbiotic relationship that Stanford has with Silicon Valley.

»“Everybody has Stanford-envy, everybody says I want this to be just like Stanford and Silicon Valley,” Kirschner said.

»Don’t expect to see this type of feeder program in Seattle anytime soon though. The inaugural 2016 GIX class is expected to have just 30 students. Though they hope to expand to a class of 3,000 by 2025, Kirschner said that pace is more on par with the academic rate of change than that of the tech world.

The inaugural 2016 GIX class is expected to have just 30 students. Though they hope to expand to a class of 3,000 by 2025, Kirschner said that pace is more on par with the academic rate of change than that of the tech world.

»The GIX model is fairly similar to that of Cornell Tech, an applied sciences graduate institute in New York City that partners Cornell University and the Technion–Israel Institute of Technology. Bloomberg Philanthropies announced this month that it’s giving $100 million to build a new campus for the institute (which is currently housed in Google’s New York office). Jandhyala said that Cornell Tech and GIX have a lot to learn from each other.


»Potential challenges

»Any new model for higher education has its own set of challenges, of course. The GIX program will put University of Washington and Tsinghua University students in the same classrooms to collaborate on the same projects that have real-world applications. As shown time and again, whose-idea-was-it lawsuits have plagued Silicon Valley and the tech scene for a while. Facebook (more famously) and Snapchat (more recently) – both created by college students at the time of their founding – have been entangled in major lawsuits disputing intellectual property.

»Jandhyala said that GIX is discussing ways to prepare for these sort of intellectual property conflicts, though it's still unclear what exactly the school's strategy will be on this front.

»To some, the choice of a Chinese partner for a technology endeavor may be troubling, especially in light of the recent federal employee data breach, for which China has been accused of carrying out.

»Kirschner acknowledged this, saying, “You’re going to have people who call it un-American, asking, ‘why are we selling out to the people who hack our most precious databases?’”

»Finally, there’s the complication of melding three institutions into one:

»“You have two universities with very different ideas about governance, intellectual property, academic freedom,” said Kirschner. “Now you throw in a corporate partnership, again, with very different ideas, and it gets challenging.”

»According to Jandhyala, in order to succeed, GIX will have to practice just what they preach—innovation.»





An innovation

2015/07/08

«Companies with boards full of white men are unlikely to be innovative»



John Connolly: Marketing Magazine



«Now, I have nothing against accountants, lawyers and engineers. Some of my best friends are men and women who are accountants, lawyers and engineers, some are a combination and some are great directors.

»But it’s a bit rich to pretend we have board diversity when these three professions make up 76 per cent of the directors of our Top 50 companies. Of course, 93 per cent of Top 50 directors are white persons of European origin and 76 per cent are male.

»The lack of diversity by profession gets worse when we get to chief executives. More than 90 per cent come from a financial or engineering background. Not that bean counters or ginger beers don’t make good bosses, but a bit of a mix would be a good thing.

»Putting women on boards has become a smokescreen for diversity. Women as board members is not about diversity but equality. The facts are, we have glass, bamboo, conservative and WAP (West Asian people) ceilings.

»The problem is this: most Australian businesses are in a zero sum game. There is small or no growth in traditional markets; there is intense competition, but a smaller number of customers in many industries; technology is threatening the business model, costs are going up and margins are being squeezed.

»Writing in the McKinsey Quarterly former IBM boss Lou Gerstner said “the willingness to tackle outmoded orthodoxies decisively is crucial to sustained value creation. In anything other than a protected industry, longevity is the capacity to change, not to stay with what you have. Companies that last 100 years are never truly the same company. They’ve changed 25 times or five times or four times over that 100 years.”

»Lou should have a look at Australia. Of the Top 50 companies in 1980 only nine survived to 2014. There goes the blue-chip theory. So there’s no one now who doesn’t preach the need for innovation for Australian business and Australia to survive. But international consulting firm BMGI found that not many companies are looking to create more innovative cultures. “At least not the big companies (Global 1000) anyway. It seems big companies are struggling with innovation … but the idea of a more innovative culture appears too frightening to many.”

»This means a lot of our biggest companies are on that very scary corporate fair ride, the loop of doom. New York’s Centre for Talent Innovation found that “companies with 2-D diversity (inherent and acquired) out-innovate and outperform others”. “Employees at these companies are 45 per cent likelier to report that their firm’s market share grew over the previous year and 70 per cent likelier to report that the firm captured a new market.”

»Only 14 per cent of 692 directors and C-suite executives surveyed by McKinsey in September 2014 picked “a reputation for independent thinking” as one of the main criteria that public company boards consider when appointing new directors.

Putting women on boards has become a smokescreen for diversity. [...] Only 14 per cent of 692 directors and C-suite executives surveyed by McKinsey in September 2014 picked “a reputation for independent thinking” as one of the main criteria that public company boards consider when appointing new directors.

»So why are boards so conservative? The birth of the shareholder value movement in 1976 saw many boards become focused solely on numbers and appeasing analysts. A 2013 survey of 774 directors by McKinsey found 65 per cent agreed they did not fully comprehend their companies’ strategies. One year later McKinsey and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board asked 604 top executives what source of pressure was most responsible for their organisation’s overemphasis on short-term financial results and under-emphasis on long-term value creation. Forty seven per cent said the board was the source of such pressure.

»On top of that appeasing analysts is probably not that smart in the long term. As a reviewer of Nobel prize winner Daniel Kahneman’s extraordinary book Thinking Fast and Slow pointed out, when Kahneman looked at the performance of Wall Street analysts over the long term, “it’s clear that you would do just as well if you entrusted your decisions to a monkey throwing darts at a board”.

»Number-based professions see the world as linear, where hard sciences prevail. They believe that by measuring everything they can make decisions that have positive outcomes. Naturally business books, particularly by management consultants (at least 20 per cent of our Top 50 directors own up to being management consultants), back this view up and cater to our need for an explanation of business success and failure. As Nassim Taleb says in The Black Swan: “We attribute our successes to our skills and our failures to external events outside our control.” Or as Bert Einstein said: “Everything that can be counted does not necessarily count; everything that counts cannot necessarily be counted.”

»Out of this need for causal relationships has come the CEO as rock star, management fads such Six Sigma, business process re-engineering, matrix management and core competence. And everyone, analysts, business commentators and authors are experts in retrospect.

»Olgivy UK vice-chairman Rory Sutherland argues that all solutions should sit at the crossroads between technology, economics, and psychology, which argues for real diversity. Or as the Centre for Talent Innovation says: “Only 10 per cent of the global talent pool is white men; more than ever, global companies need to leverage and deploy the other 90 per cent to be competitive in the global marketplace.”»





An innovator

2015/07/07

«Wichita State is getting a $1 million federal grant for roads and water lines to support the first building at the new innovation campus»



Kelsey Ryan: The Wichita Eagle



«The grant comes from the U.S. Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) and will go toward the Experiential Engineering Building on the campus, according to a news release.

»The building will create 448 experiential engineering jobs within three years, according to the release, and will train students and engage businesses.

»“The Obama Administration and the Commerce Department are committed to ensuring that young people are getting the training they need in cutting-edge technologies so that they can compete for the jobs of the future,” said Secretary Penny Pritzker in the release. “The EDA investment announced today will enable students to learn the latest innovative manufacturing techniques that employers are looking for now.”

»Wichita State will hold a news conference about the announcement at 12:15 p.m. Wednesday in the auditorium at the National Center for Aviation Training, 4004 N. Webb Rd.

»More details on the grant will be announced at that time, according to a news release. Matt S. Erskine, U.S. deputy assistant secretary of commerce for economic development and chief operating officer for the Economic Development Administration and Wichita State University President John Bardo are scheduled to speak.»





Public Administration and innovation

2015/07/06

«Newsletter L&I» (n.º 60, 2015-07-06)




Administração Pública e inovação | Administración Pública e innovación |
Administration Publique et innovation | Public Administration and innovation

Um inovador | Un innovador | Un innovateur | An innovator

Uma inovação | Una innovación | Une innovation | An innovation

A execução da inovaçao | La ejecución de la innovación | L’exécution de l’innovation |
The innovation execution



Liderar Inovando (BR)

«Unesco e EBC reúnem pesquisadores de comunicação pública em Brasília» [web] [intro]
«Vida de Ada Lovelace, primeira programadora da história, pode virar coleção da Lego» [web] [intro]
Cafeicultura brasileira investe em pesquisa e inovação. IX Simpósio de Pesquisa dos Cafés do Brasil, com o tema central «Consórcio Pesquisa Café – Oportunidades e novos desafios» [web] [intro]
«Como o turismo pode se modificar com um óculos de papelão?» [web] [intro]

Liderar Inovando (PT)

«Teatro D. Maria II fará das "tripas coração" para chegar ao público» [web] [intro]
«Presidente da Frelimo, Filipe Nyusi, quer uma juventude dinâmica e inovadora» [web] [intro]
«Inovação nos serviços móveis não pode estar desligada da sustentabilidade do negócio» [web] [intro]
«Mobile Forum Portugal aconteceu na APDC em parceria com a ACEPI e MMA» [web] [intro]

Liderar Innovando (ES)

«El proyecto piloto Innovation Startup Cádiz Camp reunirá tras el verano a jóvenes emprendedores de todo el país» [web] [intro]
«Daniel Epstein, fundador de Unreasonable Institute: "No puedes ser innovador desde un despacho"» [web] [intro]
«Cuba, primer país del mundo en eliminar la transmisión del VIH de madre a hijo» [web] [intro]
«Ejecutivos que se resisten al cambio entorpecen la innovación» [web] [intro]

Mener avec Innovation (FR)

«Centre Vidéotron: trois architectes s'expriment» [web] [intro]
«Sébastien Deletaille prédit les crises alimentaires avec les données télécoms» [web] [intro]
«Une galerie de l'innovation à ciel ouvert au Bourget» [web] [intro]
«Les villes peuvent-elles sauver le monde?» [web] [intro]

Leadership and Innovation (EN)

«1,000 leaders discuss public service innovation in Colombia» [web] [intro]
«Why we're celebrating innovative women and human robots» [web] [intro]
«EU science chief sets out proposals to boost innovation and research integrity» [web] [intro]
«CIOs: Adopt Social Media For Success, Now» [web] [intro]

Licencia Creative Commons Licencia Creative Commons
Atribución-NoComercial 4.0 Internacional








2015/07/03

«CIOs: Adopt Social Media For Success, Now»



Jonathan Feldman, Chief Information Officer for the City of Asheville, North Carolina: InformationWeek



«In June, I attended and presented at a large, excellent CIO conference in New Zealand. I learned from the conference, for sure. But I also learned some conference experience lessons beyond the event's walls that I never would have if not for social media.

»I emphasize the social media aspect, because, my fellow IT leaders, we in IT are not a terribly social lot. I attend several startup events, enterprise IT events, and marketing events each year, and I tend to do a little informal comparative analysis between them.

»There is NO comparison between social media traffic generated by enterprise IT practitioners versus, well, everybody else. Can you say "approaches zero"?

»That really needs to change, for a number of reasons.

»But most relevant to us at the moment, social media can maximize not only your conference experience, but your entire work life. Huffington Post writer and Extreme CMO Vala Afshar creates a "top social CIOs" list, because he believes, as I do, that social media can change the IT conversation in a huge, productive way. He writes, "[T]he role of the chief information officer in leading digital business transformation has become even more vital. Championing adoption of new technologies requires CIOs to actively engage and communicate broadly. To stay informed, successful CIOs are leveraging social media as their personal learning networks."

»Amen to that.

But most relevant to us at the moment, social media can maximize not only your conference experience, but your entire work life.

»When you go to a conference, you're looking both to learn about your interests and to connect with people who share those interests. This presumably will make you more effective at what you do. But like every plan, the results of this typical conference plan vary with how you execute.

»As you may know from reading my blog and this column, I have some unusual interests for an enterprise CIO, including startups, workplace innovators, and new ways to design enterprise products so that they're more usable.

»[For more insight on making your enterprise products more usable, see Usability: The Road To Digital Transformation.]

»I don't normally see those things discussed at your typical CIO conference, but I was pleasantly surprised at the #NZCIO conference, particularly by NASA/JPL CTO Tom Sodestrom's talk, which touched on several of these topics.

»Yet, great as the conference was, social media gave me the unique opportunity to learn more about startups, workplace innovation, and usability -- an opportunity that would never happened without social media. Here's how it went.

»A few weeks prior, I tweeted about my upcoming trip and talk. One of my tweeps, who knows of my interest in workplace and "better HR," said that I should connect with some folks at Vend, a startup that not only has some interesting things going on in the human resources management space, but also, arguably, has taken the very "enterprise-y" world of point-of-sale software (most of which look a whole lot like the poorly designed, busy screens of your ERP) and reinvented it to resemble the screens of a well-designed consumer app.

»My contact at Vend welcomed me, and we arranged to get together right after the conference concluded. "Let the social-media driven, post-conference learning ... COMMENCE!"


»Visiting Vend

»I visited with Kirsti Grant, Vend's head of talent, and Nic Kennedy, Vend's chief delivery officer. I learned entirely too much to detail here, but here are a few of the gems that I took away.

»How to massively recruit without a recruiter. Vend has gone from 37 employees to 250 employees since 2013 using only two external recruiters (for super-specialized jobs). How do they do it? Simple, explains Kirsti: They sponsor conferences where the potential employees are, but the more important thing is that their own employees tell their peers what an awesome place Vend is to work.

The more important thing is that their own employees tell their peers what an awesome place Vend is to work.

»There's always a higher purpose. We discussed Dan Pink's Drive, which stipulates that employees are looking for autonomy, mastery, and purpose. I bluntly asked, "You make retail software, and that seems boring to me. How is that a motivating purpose?"

»"No," answered Nic, "that's not the purpose. Our higher purpose is that we help keep small retailers in business. We give the little guy (who doesn't have the resources of a big-box retailer) the tools needed to be competitive." It was a reminder to me that everything does have a higher purpose. It's just that you may have to dig and think a little bit until you find the real, non-boring purpose.

»Customers seek experiences, not products. I had never heard of Clayton Christensen's Milkshake Marketing. Nic shared it with me, and it is a neat concept. The idea is that a fast-food restaurant wanted to improve its sales, and in the process it learned that people don't really buy milkshakes. They buy the end result of the milkshake. It is a nuanced but important difference. You can't sell more milkshakes if you don't realize why people buy them. Most of us in IT have heard of "solution-based selling," but somehow that sounds creepier than Christensen's Milkshake Marketing. The point for IT leaders is: Don't make assumptions about the point of a technology solution. Ask.

»The best processes are frictionless. The money quote here was Kirsti saying, "We were very anti-process until we hired 150 people." Ha! So many organizations lose sight of the fact that process exists to prevent errors and to ensure a predictable outcome. Nobody objects to that! What they do object to is periods when process creates drag on them, when it creates friction. Kirsti went on to say, "The thing we learned about process is that good process is invisible. People don't even realize that they're going through it."

»Point for IT leaders? We're often involved with processes-as-systems for our organizations, whether they are customer-facing (as with fulfillment sites) or employee-facing (as with intranets). As with startups, friction causes the person using the tool to WANT to go away. Avoid, avoid, avoid.

»Enterprise job protectionism is bad for the company. We got into a discussion about Vend's sales process. Nic said that there are two kinds of customers. First, there's the typical enterprise customer who represents the end-user. These folks want to do a huge feature comparison. Why? They want to document the hell out of everything, because they ultimately care most about "Will/can I get fired as a result of this product selection?" This is in stark comparison to the second type, the smaller customer who is the end user. These folks care most about benefits of the software. "Is it simple? Does it work efficiently?" What a wonderful reminder to those of us in enterprise IT to stop worrying about getting fired and start getting excited about how new tech can help our businesses and our communities. What would happen if we stopped being worried about our jobs and started wanting to help out in the best way possible?


What a wonderful reminder to those of us in enterprise IT to stop worrying about getting fired and start getting excited about how new tech can help our businesses and our communities.

»The Larger Point

»Even these few gems were incredibly valuable to me, and I'm leaving a lot out. But the larger point is this. There's just no way that this introduction and this learning would have happened without social media. Ponder that the next time someone tells you that social media is a waste of time for non-marketers.

»We make our homes in communities limited by geography. But social media allows us to choose to live in communities of interest and communities of practice -- indeed, in very rich and concentrated communities! This is where the magic happens, where we meet people we feel like we should have known all of our lives, people from whom we willingly learn and willingly work with.

»I challenge you, IT leader. Will this be the year that you get social? There are risks, certainly: trolls, people who judge you for being "social" instead of only posting about work, and people who don't understand that social media is a vital part of being the kind of leader that your organization needs. But, the benefits to you and your organization are so great that it's worth the risks.»





The innovation execution

2015/07/02

«EU science chief sets out proposals to boost innovation and research integrity»



Anthony King: Royal Society of Chemistry



«Science commissioner Carlos Moedas has continued his lively start to his premiership of EU research with a new proposal to set up a European Innovation Council. He says Europe needs to better capitalise on its research, as it currently underachieves in getting results to market, with European technologies often commercialised elsewhere.

»Moedas set out his visions and priorities for European research and innovation policy at a recent conference in Brussels, ‘A new start for Europe: Opening up to an ERA of Innovation’ saying the current the legislative frameworks, entrepreneurial attitudes and innovation ecosystem in Europe fall short.

»‘I can see that Europe does not yet have a world-class scheme to support the very best innovations,’ he told the conference. ‘I want to discuss [the innovation council] as a major element under the [2017] mid-term review of Horizon 2020.’

»The new council would support the most innovative projects, companies or entrepreneurs. The intention is not to have a talking shop but to provide real monetary support.


»Decisions ahead

»Those close to discussions point to the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Programme in the US as an example of best practice internationally. Like SBIR, a phased approach would likely be taken by the innovation council, with some money for feasibility studies, followed by more substantial grants closer to market. But Moedas stressed that much work was still required to get it right.

»‘The prestige of a European Innovation Council, and its financial means, could make a difference. But it seems to me that the challenge is how to make it happen,’ notes Thomas Crouzier, a researcher at KTH Royal Institute for Technology in Sweden who blogs about digital tools for research. Certainly evaluating innovation proposals would be trickier than judging excellence in basic science, as the European Research Council does, says Luc Soete, an innovation expert at the University of Maastricht in the Netherlands: ‘This idea would need a lot of reflection to see how best to implement it.’

»Others complement Moedas’ energy and dynamism but wonder about policy directions. ‘Would you focus on the equivalent of Oxford or Cambridge in the innovation world, which inevitably would mean some strong regions and countries getting stronger, or would you offer a counterbalance?’ asks Alan Irwin, science and technology policy expert at Copenhagen Business School, Denmark. He notes that smaller nations can prioritise certain areas, but it is hard to imagine Brussels making such strategic decisions about innovation.


Others complement Moedas’ energy and dynamism but wonder about policy directions. ‘Would you focus on the equivalent of Oxford or Cambridge in the innovation world, which inevitably would mean some strong regions and countries getting stronger, or would you offer a counterbalance?’ asks Alan Irwin, science and technology policy expert at Copenhagen Business School.

»Focus on integrity

»Moedas also said the time has come for a European initiative on research integrity to promote excellence and show to the public that European science is above reproach. ‘We should launch a new European Research Integrity Initiative, with clear standards and mechanisms to tackle scientific misconduct, by the end of this year,’ he said.

»As a major funder of European research, the European Commission as is able to act if there is any financial misconduct in a project, but not scientific misconduct. The plan is to correct this situation.

»‘Research integrity is an absolutely crucial issue, in a world based on open access to publication and data. Universities are absolutely willing to take their responsibility on this issue,’ notes Kurt Deketelaere, secretary-general of the League of European Research Universities. ‘A complementary approach between the EC and universities is desirable, with the EC putting forward the framework and the universities implementing it.’

»By and large commissioner’s plans have been welcomed by the scientific community in Europe. ‘What has influenced his perspective is his engineering background…you can see you are dealing with an engineer,’ Soete observes. ‘He wants to find solutions to the problems as he identifies them, and that is pretty refreshing.’»





An innovation

2015/07/01

«Why we're celebrating innovative women and human robots»



Rachel Barnes: Marketing Magazine



«It has been quite a year of firsts for us: we unveiled our inaugural Marketing New Thinking Awards last month and I'm delighted to say that we are partnering Sky Media for the initiative. In this issue we also feature an interview with Bina48. She is an artificial-intelligence robot that has been modelled on a real person - Bina Rothblatt - both physically and mentally, using the "real" Bina's thoughts and feelings. "It's really hard being a robot in a world full of humans," Bina48 laments. Definitely a first for Marketing.

»And you may remember, we announced in March that we were launching Digital Mavericks, a project to seek out the most innovative women in digital marketing, focusing on those pioneers at the crucial mid-point in their careers. The latter criterion was key, because we didn’t want this to be just another list. With Digital Mavericks, we wanted specifically to draw attention to that career mid-point at which so many women in the tech sector (56%, according to US data) leave the industry for various reasons.

»So I’m proud to introduce you to 11 remarkable women, an eclectic group which we describe as "inspiring, down-to-earth and ego-free".

I’m proud to introduce you to 11 remarkable women, an eclectic group which we describe as "inspiring, down-to-earth and ego-free".

»These women all have something in common – they have determined what personal success looks like to them. Their advice is invaluable not only to women and men starting out, but also to any of us looking up, down and across the hierarchy: it’s about empowerment, belief in yourself, respect for others and making your dreams reality. They may seem rose-tinted, but these are not bad guidelines by which to lead your life.

»Several of their comments relate to "having a voice". "Don’t be afraid to speak up," advises Microsoft Research’s Haiyan Zhang. "It is important to remember what you have to say is valid." Havas Media’s Amy Kean says she has noted a depressing tendency: "We see women speaking too quickly during a meeting because they are so used to being interrupted. This is why empowerment is so important."

»Jayne Hardy, founder of a depression-support network, has an incredible story and one comment, in particular, struck a chord with me: "Don’t spend years thinking about what you really want to do; start taking small steps every day. You can’t be afraid to try."

»I’d like to thank Monster, our partner for Digital Mavericks, which shared our ambition to shine a spotlight on women in digital marketing, our awe-inspiring charity partner Women for Women International, and, of course, our judges, BBH’s Mel Exon, Unruly’s Sarah Wood and Bloom’s Charlie Hunt, who helped us make the near-impossible decisions as to who would be named a Digital Maverick. All agreed that each of our shortlisted 20 women were worthy of inclusion. Not only are these women impressive, but they are also now giving their own time to mentor women starting out in their careers. As Indiegogo’s Anastasia Emmanuel remarks: "Being nice is underrated. People do pay it forward and they will open their networks to you if you are generous."»





An innovator