Over the last decade, many corporate innovation initiatives have been born, some have flourished but some failed to take root. Among the lessons learned, we see the need for continued openness and cooperation. From the beginning of the innovation process, all stakeholders should be involved. In this way, there will be a shift in thinking and interaction among the stakeholders for increased collective value. This is often referred to as systemic innovation.
According to Nesta, an inspiring social innovation foundation based in the UK, systemic innovation involves interconnected set of innovations, where each influences the other, with innovation both in parts of the system and in the ways in which they interconnect. This means that innovation should not only create value for one entity but for all involved. Therein lies the challenge.
Aware that systemic change is no longer an option but a requirement as we transition towards a sustainable planet, we must tackle the matter head on.
Despite the fact that systemic innovation has the potential to radically change our society and the system as a whole, there are still many areas of divergence most notably the lack of a common definition. That is why we, as sustainable innovation facilitators, believe that a systemic holistic approach to innovation is an opportunity to be exploited. It provides a platform through which organizations including corporates, public institutions, NGOs, CBOs and social entrepreneurs can work together. Society’s most pressing challenges will not be overcome if these organizations continue to work in silos. We must all sit around the same table and leverage collective intelligence and the knowledge that already exists within the system, to build sustainable innovation to positively impact on the society.
Systemic Innovation is more than a trend, it is a unique approach to work on urban resilience and ensure that the cities of tomorrow are not only smart, but ready for change.