The Inflation of Innovation

This Ö1 show from the series Dimensions deals with the history of the concept of innovation up to the question of how university innovation differs from entrepreneurial innovation – but also with a variety of other puzzling topics in the field. In the broadcast, Markus Peschl describes our understanding of the matter – and explains what makes truly radical innovation so special.

According to Markus, there is a phrase that neatly captures what successful innovation requires: “Learning from the future as it emerges.” The phrase is interesting because it reveals an insight into the nature of innovation. “I, as a cognitive system, as a creative person, am not solely responsible for bringing something new into the world,” says Markus. Rather, he says, it is heterogeneous, interdisciplinary social systems that work together and “listen into the future”, thus bringing novelty into the world in a collaborative spirit.

Markus also argues that radical innovation cannot be “controlled” – and that our need to control innovation processes undermines the emergence of true novelty. Learning from the future, then, means surrendering control in order to allow novelty to “emerge” in the first place.

You can listen to the show here (in German, for educational purpose only).

Image: Luis Feliciano at Unslpash