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Innovation Against All Odds :: Open Foresight Series QI/QII 2021



The coalface of innovation has never been an easy ascent. Though, in the minds of those that talk it, without having walked it, taking ideas from paper to market can be accomplished by following a series of bullet-points and soundbites, in reality no idea is too good to not fail, and even the best usually have a sell-by-date. Yet, even amidst the turmoil of present - a pandemic with more twists and turns than a gnarly old oak, tectonic political shifts on every continent but for the North and South Poles, whole industries mothballed or all but, and against the backdrop of a socio-environmental crisis of such complexity and scale that it’s not yet fully understood, let alone fully quantified - some businesses aren’t just surviving, but thriving. How, against such odds, do they do it? In this, the inaugural report in the Open Foresight Series, several foremost factors that are shaping innovation-at-the-edge are discussed. An independent work, the lens through which its contents are seen is autonomous and without intent to catalyse publicity for any product, service, brand, or other commercial entity. Authored at the interface of disciples and demographies, this report is holistic in its methodology, rejecting siloed quantitative approaches of the all-too-quickly dateable kind, such as online surveys and spot-check polls. Drawing on insights from one- to-one conversations with individuals of whom the careers have been spent treading paths unknown to pioneer groundbreaking new ideas, inventions, and the industries they collectively manifest, together with review of data of copious kind, this work stresses the imperative for innovation led by highly informed choices on the part of businesses of every size, type, and location. Forewarned is forearmed, and particularly when working against umpteen odds. Though often presented as either the sum of exponentially expanding and invariably disconnected parts or one of many qualitatively distinct trajectories of which the outcomes sit at tangents, in practice not [always] theory, the future - or at least parts of it - is relatively predictable: history does often repeat itself, and it repeats itself because at the level of systems outputs are coupled to inputs and thus patterns tend to emerge. As will be discussed in the pages that follow, an array of advancements both technical and conceptual are enabling more dots to be joined, and joined at speeds unthinkable in the past. The Internet now laden with often deeply conflicting accounts of possible near futures, this report is designed to disseminate what developments in not one, not two, but many disciplines collectively suggest to be key considerations that they working in business and beyond need consider in the immediate years ahead. 70-page open access foresight report published under Creative Commons Attribution- NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0). Citation reference: Sterry, M (2021), Innovation Against All Odds, QI/QII 2021, Open Foresight Series.
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Innovation Against All Odds, QI/QII 2021
  • M Accreditation -Sterry
Accreditation -Sterry, M (2021), Innovation Against All Odds, QI/QII 2021, Open Foresight Series.