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innovation DAILY

Here we highlight selected innovation related articles from around the world on a daily basis.  These articles related to innovation and funding for innovative companies, and best practices for innovation based economic development.

Entrepreneur Corner Roundup: Growth drivers, social media marketing and should entrepreneurs be more like teenage girls?

5 milestones to reach before raising venture capital – Many entrepreneurs assume once they’ve got an idea, the next thing to do is raise venture capital. That’s naïve, says Mike McDerment, the co-founder and CEO of FreshBooks. Here are the five signs you’re actually ready....

BusinessWeek: Where Have You Gone, Bell Labs?

America needs good jobs, soon. We need 6.7 million just to replace losses from the current recession, then another 10 million to spark demand over the next decade. That's 15 million to 17 million new jobs. In the 1990s, the U.S. economy created a net 22 million jobs (a rate of 2.2 million per year), so we know it can be done. Between 2000 and the end of 2007 (the beginning of the current recession), however, the economy created new jobs at a rate of 900,000 a year, so we know it isn't doing it now. The pipeline is dry because the U.S. business model is broken. Our growth engine has run out of a key source of fuel—critical mass, basic scientific research.

WSJ: Social Innovation as an Art

Bill Strickland turned his love of ceramics into a creative outlet for disadvantaged city kids.

Mr. Strickland started a Pittsburgh program in 1968 called the Manchester Craftsmen's Guild to offer arts classes to kids; now he's CEO of the 138-employee nonprofit Manchester Bidwell Corp., which also provides vocational training to adults. He won a MacArthur Fellowship "genius" award in 1996 for economic development. Edited interview excerpts follow.

Science Progress: The Geography of Innovation

Innovation is the critical component of long-term economic prosperity, driving productivity growth and (if spread across key sectors of the economy) ensuring broad-based economic growth. Sparking innovation, however, requires capital (which is threatened by the current economic downturn), skilled-labor, scientific and technological advances, and creative collaboration between government and the private sector. Innovation cannot be dictated, but it can be cultivated.

10 Reasons why some Nations are Rich

Wealth in the world is not equally distributed. Some nations are very rich whereas others are very poor. The Western nations such as the US, West Germany, UK are very prosperous. On the other hand, economically poor countries such as those in the African continent and India, Pakistan are lagging behind. Why is this disparity so? Many economists have tried to answer this question and have suggested solutions to it, but yet it persists.


Leaders, take heed: There really might be no time like the present to launch a new product or service.

“This is a time when a lot of businesses are hunkering down,” said Chuck Bamford, a professor of entrepreneurship at Queens University of Charlotte and business consultant. “Typical competitors are not looking to do something new or different. … Providing you can financially afford it, take this as an opportunity to test out ideas and try to be innovative.”

Indian agriculture needs a jump innovation

The world is witnessing urbanisation. In the next few years more than half of the global population will be living in cities. Many of these cities are typical delta metropolis, usurping the space most suited for agricultural production. Moreover, rural population will keep leaving the rural poverty trap and move towards cities that offer the connection to the 21st century network society.

How About an Entrepreneurship Czar?

As we near the one-year anniversary of our economic recession, we also appear to be approaching a crucial juncture and, of the two likely paths ahead, neither is cause for optimism.

History, economic indicators and the natural business cycle all suggest that we are transitioning out of the Crash of Late-2008 into either a "double-dip" downturn or a slow "jobless" recovery. In other words, our near-term prospects appear to be either catastrophic or merely dreary -- deflation-driven depression or inflation-driven recession, 1932 or 1976.

Government of Canada invests in small and medium-sized businesses across Southern Ontario

The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Science and Technology and Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario), announced today that the Government of Canada is supporting job creation for R&D-intensive small- and medium-sized businesses across Southern Ontario through strategic investments.

“The Government of Canada is investing in innovative companies to create jobs and stimulate the economy in communities across Southern Ontario,” said Minister Goodyear. “We are supporting science and technology at local businesses so that people throughout the region will benefit from increased opportunities as we strengthen the long-term capacity for research and innovation of these firms.”

NYT: Protecting the Patent System for Entrepreneurs

Recently, a number of companies from the information technology and financial services sectors have been pushing Congress to change the patent system.

The companies have been seeking passage of the Patent Reform Act of 2009 (H.R. 1260 and S. 515). So far, the legislation has been introduced in both the House and the Senate, and the Senate Judiciary Committee has reported out the bill.

Becoming an Innovative Leader

When we take innovation away from the technologists and start to look at innovation as a set of behaviours that can drive change and culture, we start to look at innovation as a leadership model.

Using the Creatrix from the Richard Byrd Co in MN USA, we can identify the eight faces of innovation. All have there place and strength in today’s organisation, however the balance and focus will need to adapt for each need the organisation faces.

Breaking down barriers to innovation. Destroy the Hierarchical Organizational Structure.

Some companies have taken the idea of breaking down barriers to innovation one step further. They tear up the hierarchical organization and start with something very different.

The traditional top-down structure in organizations can be a powerful inhibitor to innovation. It is a reflection of a style of leadership based on command and control where orders are issued at the top and followed by the ranks. People lower down the organization who have great ideas can feel inhibited about promoting them. They feel it is disrespectful to challenge the command chain. Most modern businesses try to overcome this with open communication and employee empowerment. But there is a more radical alternative – destroy the hierarchy altogether.

Youth entrepreneur challenge unveiled Tuesday

The details of a national contest to inspire young entrepreneurs will be unveiled next Tuesday at 2 p.m. at Moncton's Capitol Theatre.

Officials from the Canadian Youth Business Foundation and locally-founded will be joined by Premier Shawn Graham, several provincial cabinet ministers, Moncton Mayor George LeBlanc and many other special guests and dignitaries for the unveiling. The youth entrepreneurship challenge is a contest aimed at peole aged 18-34 who have always dreamed of starting their own business