The Third Open Innovation Summit - In Review


The Third Open Innovation Summit organized by World RG was a mix of best practice shared by companies, combined with speeches from authors and thought-leaders.

Among the highlights for me was Qualcomm's experience of running internal programs to spark innovations. When accepting ideas from employees, they found that often people were not even aware that other people were already working on that idea. They also found it difficult to solicit the technical breakthroughs they wanted - people did not have enough time to work on these types of ideas.

Another theme was motivating solvers and contributors to crowd-sourced efforts. Innocentive noted that they found there were three parts to this puzzle: personal satisfaction, reward, peer recognition. Different people are often incentivized by one of these different things, though not often multiple. Meanwhile, at Overstocked.com, they asked, 'do contributors have the Motive, Means and Opportunity' to contribute?

However, where I thought this conference really broke new ground was on the third day - covering topics on the emergence of the BRIC countries - Brazil, Russia, India and China. What does it mean to do Open Innovation in these countries? While Brandi Moore beautifully described some concepts that those of us that have looked at cross-cultural communication will already be aware of, the real insight was how she weaved these together. For example, with the concept power-distance, I'd not realized that power-distance is related to the communication style of 'beating around the bush' - with greater power distance leading to more of this style of communication.