Innovation matters!

In our dynamic and fast-changing world, with global competition and increasing automation, innovation matters. It matters for both firms and individuals. For firms, maintaining competitiveness is increasingly difficult: For example, research shows that the longevity of companies populating rankings such as the Fortune 500 is declining. At the same time, it has been estimated that about half of all activities performed by the US workforce today are highly susceptible for automation, and it would be technically feasible to automate 2/3 of those activities now with demonstrated technology.[i] And as recent political developments in many developed countries indicate, finding ways to increase employment that are both meaningful and generate a decent pay, is one of the major challenges of our time.

Corporate executives today view building innovation capacities as one of their top strategic priorities for their firms, but successful innovation appears difficult to achieve. According to a recent study, only six percent of company leaders are satisfied with the current level of innovation performance of their organizations.[ii]

It is for this reason that I focus my work on helping organizations and individuals to build their innovation capabilities.  In my research I focus on creating knowledge to support this capability building activities. My recent research investigates how innovation performance is impacted by

  • the underlying structure of problems and solutions,
  • choices in process governance (open vs. closed innovation),
  • the use of digital design tools, and
  • the use of innovation practices such as Design Thinking.

The results of my research work flow directly into my teaching and advising activities.  I also collaborate with industrial partners in various formats, ranging from joint research projects, to teaching, advising and consulting, to speaking engagements.

Feel free to contact me at

[i] See Chui, M., Manyika, J. and Miremadi, M. (2016). Where machines could replace humans – and where they can’t (yet). In: McKinsey Quarterly: McKinsey.

[ii] See Ringel, M., Taylor, A. and Zablit, H. (2015). Innovation in 2015. In: BCG Perspectives: Boston Consulting Group. and McKinsey (2016). Growth & Innovation.