Typecasestudy case studies describing several of

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type=“caseStudy” Case Studies describing several of these social entrepreneurs are available on the Innovation Portal at But ‘entrepreneurs’ are also part of any large established organization, trying to propose and introduce changes which will renew its products, services or operating processes. Their names may not be so familiar but they work on the inside trying to renew what the organization offers and the ways it creates and delivers those offerings. And – as we’ve seen – the motivation for entrepreneurship varies from those who are trying to create commercial value to those with more of a social concern.
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type=“media” Video Clip of several social entrepreneurs are available on the Innovation Portal at This idea of entrepreneurship driving innovation to create value – social and commercial – across the lifecycle of organizations is central to this book. Table 1.1 gives some examples. Table 1.1: Entrepreneurship and innovation Stage in lifecycle Start-up Growth Sustain/scale Renew Creating wealth Individual entrepreneur exploiting new technology or market opportunity Growing the business through adding new products/services or moving into new markets Building a portfolio of incremental and radical innovation to sustain the business and/or spread its influence into new markets Returning to the radical frame-breaking kind of innovation which began the business and enables it to move forwards as something very different Creating social value Social entrepreneur, passionately concerned to improve or change something in their immediate environment Developing the ideas and engaging others in a network for change – perhaps in a region or around a key issue Spreading the idea widely, diffusing it to other communities of social entrepreneurs, engaging links with mainstream players like public sector agencies Changing the system – and then acting as an agent for the next wave of change Innovation and Knowledge One last point is worth making here: the key role played by knowledge in innovation. The ability to make the kind of changes we looked at above depends on creating or acquiring and then deploying knowledge to create value. Essentially, what organizations know and have learnt is a core asset which they can leverage. This may be technology or it may be understanding of markets, and the knowledge involved may be in explicit or tacit form. But the evidence is clear: paying attention to creating, capturing and using knowledge is critical in innovation. One indicator of just how important it has become is the sheer scale of investment in R&D, which is currently running at $1500
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billion per year! We’ll look closely at this theme in the book, not least because in such a knowledge-rich world the challenge is increasingly one of managing flows of knowledge around an increasingly global and networked space. This challenge is often given the label ‘open innovation’. We’ll return to it later in the book.
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