The power of ecosystem thinking

“Opening up our thinking towards ecosystems will have a powerful effect,
it alters the way we will approach problems today and in the future”

Our whole understanding of innovation is changing; we are evaluating and changing our existing focus from closed (internal orientation) into open and far more collaborative innovation (external orientation) with our collective thinking offering the acceleration into improving our innovation performances, leading to higher chances of achieving greater impact and success.

The search is seemingly on to find greater value, which will increasingly coalesce around different innovation ecosystems.  We need to form in many different ways significantly more relationships that increasingly matter to each organization, that add value, insight, and bring external expertise inside to work on ‘greater’ innovation solutions. We are creating the potential to deliver innovative products and services that would not be delivered by only having the one organization attempting it. Complexity is on the rise, offering discrete products is on the wane.

Firstly why are business ecosystems emerging as a real competitive force?

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The ecosystem relationship of a rain forest is also how innovation can work effectively  

Firstly I would argue that innovation, to be managed well, needs to operate like an ecosystem, the same as a tropical rainforest.

Ecosystems to flourish need to experience critical feeds, in the rain forest this is high average temperatures and significant rainfall.

Well for innovation to thrive needs critical aspects; it needs a real focus, well above average and significant attention  to be well maintained and flourish.

We argue for diversity within our innovation teams, in our thinking, in our environment and that is no different from the high levels of biodiversity in tropical rain forests.

We need this ‘richness’ of thinking, of approaches, of discovery.  We search constantly for ideas, we experiment, and we are subjected to change. We are always looking for that certain something still undiscovered. Continue reading

What makes up a winning innovation ecosystem of design?

So what can be gained by adopting a more innovation ecosystem approach?

As we recognize and push out through more open networking and relationships, we are opening up to new learning. We sharpen our minds and attain smarter resources as this exposes ‘us’ to new fields of expertise and knowledge that we can absorb and translate into new innovation opportunities.

As we connect and integrate this learning, we are all becoming co-creators that can arrive at different defining and shape potential. By reaching out, we operate differently, we become more engaged and open.

Let me offer four connecting themes that are shifting our ways to operate and innovate that provide a far greater set of dynamics by ’embracing’ an ecosystem collaborative design approach.

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The Evolving Platform Strategies in the Industrial Space

There is far more focus on the consumer platform market where Facebook, Alibaba, Google, etc. all get the publicity and consequential high valuations to their business models. Yet, the size of the Industrial Platform market will be bigger, perhaps not in “eyeballs” but far more in economic value and growth to those that commit to these changes by collaborating through a networked designed platform ecosystem.

Redesigning a specific industry space to adapt and adjust to a platform business model is hard work. The investment in years of building internal systems is rapidly becoming worrying “legacy” issues. The new way to perform in business is through open, collaborative networks of collaborators that achieve far more growth potential by participating in an ecosystem of partners.

Strategic Industrial relationships are radically changing Continue reading

Are innovation spillovers about to accelerate the course of the energy transformation?

Achieving clean energy technology innovations will be vital if we want to meet the goals of net-zero emissions in the next fifty years.

Innovation is central to the energy transition through new technology solutions.

Innovation can accelerate and achieve rapid reductions in emissions of greenhouse gases to anything near the net-zero goals set in the Paris Agreement of 2015 to hold the global average temperature to below 2oC of pre-industrial levels.

We need significant development and diffuse new technology solutions to displace existing energy assets to move towards a global economy based on clean energy.

As we look at any clean energy scenarios, it is highly reliant on moving concepts, through prototyping into a commercial demonstration. Presently many of the clean energy solutions rely on technologies that are present only in a prototype or early smaller demonstration-scale and will not come to a commercial scale without significant new R&D efforts.

There are also numerous concepts indicating promising technology solutions that have not been, as yet, commercially deployed in any mass-market way. Some scenarios looking out over the next thirty or more years are suggesting these critical technologies can make up to 75% of solving any cumulative CO2 emissions. Continue reading

Exploring the Innovation Technology in the Clean Energy Ecosystem

Anyone involved in the Energy world knows how complex it has become.

It seemed as we look back at the past; we had simply one power provider, using one fossil fuel, maximizing their dedicated infrastructure and transmission lines, to then deliver to their dedicated substations and then onto the eventual consumer or customer the needed electricity or heat supply. It is radically different today for numerous reasons.

Reality is, we need to undertake a radical redesign of our entire energy ecosystem.

The consensus is that over the next twenty to thirty years, we must undergo a drastic change in our whole energy systems.

Do we understand what this means? Can we grasp the complexity of this undertaking?

I think we have some real help in understanding this through how the International Energy Agency is going about tackling the complexity will significantly help; they have mapped the entire energy system. Continue reading