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    Collaborative Innovation And ICTs Could Give Economy Back Its Colours

    Published on 6 July 2009 @ 9:53 am

    By , Intellectual Property Watch

    Innovation and technology will be key to emergence from the global economic crisis, according to speakers at a recent United Nations conference on innovation-based competitiveness. However, innovation should be collaborative and involve resources inside and outside companies and institutions.

    The “International Conference on Technological Readiness for Innovation-based Competitiveness” was organised by the UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) on 29-30 June.

    ICTs are a platform for innovation, said Sacha Wunsch-Vincent, economist at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). The ICT sector has managed so far to retain some growth as it benefited from the fiscal stimulus packages that OECD countries have implemented. Those fiscal measures fostered demand on ICTs and countries invested in ICT infrastructure in areas such as schools, the public sector and health.

    This channelling of investment of ICTs in the OECD countries leads to a first order effect and a second order effect, said Wunsch-Vincent. The first effect creates jobs and wages “when people dig holes to put in fibres,” while the second effect creates demand for new ICT new products, which then creates a platform for innovation in other sectors.

    The OECD issued a report calling for an innovation-driven response to the economic crisis in June (IPW, Information and Communications Technology, 16 June 2009).

    “We need innovation in ICT as well as we continue to need ICT infrastructure, hardware, software and people working in ICT, if we want to have innovation in other fields,” said Jean-Claude Badoux, moderator of the conference and chairman of the UNECE team of specialists on intellectual property.

    ICTs are considered as a tool to build up a modern information society, according to Evelin Krõlov from the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Estonia has invested a lot in ICTs in recent years and is working on about 270 different information technology projects ranging from e-tax office, e-statistics, to e-business and e-health.

    The Estonian government, which has received help from various partners, intends on increasing the e-literacy of the population and ensuring internet access to everyone, Krõlov said.

    According to her, since 2006, the Estonian government has been working on an information society development plan, stretching to 2013, and has objectives such as the availability of internet access in all Estonian schools. The government has projects in different sectors engaging public and private sectors.

    “Competition is no longer the only driving force behind development and innovation,” she said. “Cooperation is important.”

    For Martin Curley, director of Intel Labs Europe, “society is shifting” from a resource-based society to a knowledge-based society. According to him and others, ICTs increase energy efficiency, as for example video conference solutions mean that you can cut transportation needs, but also enable new capabilities and bring more efficient commerce and collaboration. However, he said, “the real value of innovation comes from diffusion.”

    Collaborated Innovation

    Intel, the National University of Ireland, Microsoft, and other companies are pooling their collective knowledge to build a “maturity model.” They intend to produce assessment tools so that any company or country could assess how mature they are in applying ICTs in creating a more sustainable business eco-system.

    This collaborative effort is in the same trend that Paula Wasowska, director for Central and Eastern Europe market development for Cisco Systems, described as “connected innovation.”

    Connected innovation is a new concept fuelled by collaboration, she said. “The world has changed,” and “we need a new paradigm.” Innovation is not a destination, it is a process, and the human network is a critical element of competitiveness for companies, but not only for companies, she said.

    “Innovation is moving from the in-house to the connected global market place, from the isolated individuals to collaborative environment…from proprietary control to open source, from single specialties to multidisciplinary perspective,” she said, and customers have become a critical force of competitive data as they are an invaluable force of information.

    A number of myths about innovation need to be dispelled, according to Wasowska. For instance, innovation is not only about good ideas, is not a spontaneous occurrence, and is not in need of more and more new ideas. Innovation is about collaboration-driven innovation tapping into collective intelligence, and providing the right structure for new ideas.

    Connected innovation requires cultural change to collaborative sharing of information, skills and perspectives within organisations and between them, the customers and the partners. “Innovation happens when people work together,” she said.

    Joachim Von Heimburg, director for corporate research and development at Procter & Gamble, also said it was important to build external innovation networks.

    However, innovation needs to be brought to market. “If we want innovations to go on the market and if we want innovation to create jobs, we need entrepreneurs,” said Badoux.

    The need to broaden the search for innovators was underlined by several speakers such as George Lagardère, director for NineSigma Europe. “The question is to know who knows,” he said.

    According to Claran McGinley, controller at the European Patent Office, the patent system is not working, as the need to file a patent application in different patent offices in the world has brought a global workload problem. One factor slowing the patenting process in ICT areas is that patent pending owners are “sitting on their patents so that they can adjust the language of their intellectual property after the standard bodies have taken their decision,” he said.

    The important thing about open innovation is that “it is a team effort and crosses boundaries,” McGinley said.

    Innovation does not come particularly from university and PhD research, said Badoux. He gave the example of Switzerland where a lot of innovation is happening and where part of the educational system is based on apprenticeship.

    “When we look for innovation, it would be wrong to base it only on PhD research,” he said. “We need people who are ready to have dirty hands,”

    UN Works on Standards for e-Documents

    Meanwhile, there is a UN body focussed on standards relating to documents. Mike Doran, vice chairperson for the UN Centre for Trade Facilitation and Electronic Business (UN/CEFACT), said the centre develops trade facilitation recommendations and e-business standards. It also searches for ways to identify and eliminate regulatory and procedural barriers to trade with the aim of reducing delays within and between countries.

    UN/CEFACT provides standard and templates for aligning international trade documents, like quotations, orders, invoices, transport documents and customs documents as well as e-business standards development such as business process models, business requirements specifications, and technical specifications, Doran said, adding that the standards issued by UN/CEFACT were open, interoperable and free, available both in paper and electronic format.

    Catherine Saez may be reached at info@ip-watch.ch.

     

    Comments

    1. Intellectual Property Watch » Blog Archive » Collaborative … | Distressed Marketplace says:

      [...] more here: Intellectual Property Watch » Blog Archive » Collaborative … Categories : AREA Property Partners, Real Estate [...]

    2. International Conference on Technological Readiness for Innovation-based Competitiveness « Connected Innovation – the synthesis of Open Innovation, Collaboration and Technology says:

      [...] Competitiveness” was organised by the UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) on 29-30 June. Read more… [...]

    3. Collaborative and open innovation in the global limelight – says:

      [...] Intellectual Property Watch Newsletter 0f 6 July reported that ‘innovation and technology will be key to emergence from the global economic [...]


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    We welcome your participation in article and blog comment threads, and other discussion forums, where we encourage you to analyse and react to the content available on the Intellectual Property Watch website. By participating in discussions or reader forums, or by submitting opinion pieces or comments to articles, blogs, reviews or multimedia features, you are consenting to these rules.

    We welcome your participation in article and blog comment threads, and other discussion forums, where we encourage you to analyse and react to the content available on the Intellectual Property Watch website.

    By participating in discussions or reader forums, or by submitting opinion pieces or comments to articles, blogs, reviews or multimedia features, you are consenting to these rules.

    1. You agree that you are fully responsible for the content that you post. You will not knowingly post content that violates the copyright, trademark, patent or other intellectual property right of any third party or which you know is under a confidentiality obligation preventing its publication and that you will request removal of the same should you discover that you have violated this provision. Likewise, you may not post content that is libelous, defamatory, obscene, abusive, that violates a third party's right to privacy, that otherwise violates any applicable local, state, national or international law, that amounts to spamming or that is otherwise inappropriate. You may not post content that degrades others on the basis of gender, race, class, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual preference, disability or other classification. Epithets and other language intended to intimidate or to incite violence are also prohibited. Furthermore, you may not impersonate others.

    2. You understand and agree that Intellectual Property Watch is not responsible for any content posted by you or third parties. You further understand that IP Watch does not monitor the content posted. Nevertheless, IP Watch may monitor the any user-generated content as it chooses and reserves the right to remove, edit or otherwise alter content that it deems inappropriate for any reason whatever without consent nor notice. We further reserve the right, in our sole discretion, to remove a user's privilege to post content on our site. IP Watch is not in any manner endorsing the content of the discussion forums and cannot and will not vouch for its reliability or otherwise accept liability for it.

    3. By submitting any contribution to IP Watch, you warrant that your contribution is your own original work and that you have the right to make it available to IP Watch for all purposes and you agree to indemnify IP Watch, its directors, employees and agents against all damages, legal fees and others expenses that may be incurred by IP Watch as a result of your breach of warranty or of these terms.

    4. You further agree not to publish any personal information about yourself or anyone else (for example telephone number or home address). If you add a comment to a blog, be aware that your email address will be apparent.

    5. IP Watch will not be liable for any loss including but not limited to the following (whether such losses are foreseen, known or otherwise): loss of data, loss of revenue or anticipated profit, loss of business, loss of opportunity, loss of goodwill or injury to reputation, losses suffered by third parties, any indirect, consequential or exemplary damages.

    6. You understand and agree that the discussion forums are to be used only for non-commercial purposes. You may not solicit funds, promote commercial entities or otherwise engage in commercial activity in our discussion forums.

    7. You acknowledge and agree that you use and/or rely on any information obtained through the discussion forums at your own risk.

    8. For any content that you post, you hereby grant to IP Watch the royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual, exclusive and fully sub-licensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such content in whole or in part, world-wide and to incorporate it in other works, in any form, media or technology now known or later developed.

    9. These terms and your posts and contributions shall be governed and interpreted in accordance with the laws of Switzerland (without giving effect to conflict of laws principles thereof) and any dispute exclusively settled by the Courts of the Canton of Geneva.

     

     
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