The Architecture of Innovation: The Economics of Creative Organizations

Overview


Find the right innovation model

Innovation is a much-used buzzword these days, but when it comes to creating and implementing a new idea, many companies miss the mark—plans backfire, consumer preferences shift, or tried-and-true practices fail to work in a new context. So is innovation just a low-odds crapshoot?

In The Architecture of Innovation, Harvard Business School professor Josh Lerner—one of the ...

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The Architecture of Innovation: The Economics of Creative Organizations

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Overview


Find the right innovation model

Innovation is a much-used buzzword these days, but when it comes to creating and implementing a new idea, many companies miss the mark—plans backfire, consumer preferences shift, or tried-and-true practices fail to work in a new context. So is innovation just a low-odds crapshoot?

In The Architecture of Innovation, Harvard Business School professor Josh Lerner—one of the foremost experts on how innovation works—says innovation can be understood and managed. The key to success? Incentives.

Fortunately, new research has shed light on the role incentives can play in promoting new ideas, but these findings have been absent from innovation literature—until now. By using the principles of organizational economics, Lerner explains how companies can set the right incentives and time horizons for investments and create a robust innovation infrastructure in the process.

Drawing from years of experience studying and advising companies, venture capital firms, and an assortment of governments around the globe, Lerner looks to corporate labs and start-ups, and argues that the best elements of both can be found in hybrid models for innovation. While doing so, he uses a wide range of industry-rich examples to show how these models work and how you can put them into practice in your own organization.

Practical and thought-provoking, The Architecture of Innovation is the missing blueprint for any company looking to strengthen its innovation competence.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Josh Lerner provides an authoritative analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of the American system.” — The Financial Times

“The Architecture of Innovation is a ‘must read’ for R&D managers and CTOs whose mission is to innovate. “ — Research-Technology Management

ADVANCE PRAISE for The Architecture of Innovation:

Paul Romer, Professor of Economics, New York University Stern School of Business; Founder, Aplia—
“In his latest book, Josh Lerner shows that by following a few basic principles, any organization can innovate more successfully. You couldn’t ask for a better guide to the solid knowledge about what works, or a better antidote to the misleading parts of conventional wisdom.”

Hal Varian, Chief Economist, Google—
“Which is a better model for innovation: corporate labs or venture-funded start-ups? Josh Lerner argues convincingly for a hybrid model that combines the best of both approaches. The Architecture of Innovation offers practical advice for those in both the public and private sectors who seek to stimulate innovation.”

Scott Anthony, Managing Director, Innosight Asia-Pacific; author, The Little Black Book of Innovation
“An important contribution whose lucid and thorough analysis provides practical guidance for leaders trying to transform innovation intent into substantial and sustainable impact.”

Pontus Braunerhjelm, Chair, 2010 Global Award for Entrepreneurship—
“Josh Lerner is a superstar, a contemporary giant of entrepreneurship scholarship in the domain of VC-backed business venturing. His empirical research on the interrelationships between venture capital, innovation, and entrepreneurship has greatly extended and improved our understanding of one of the engines of modern economic growth.”

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781422143636
  • Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press
  • Publication date: 9/4/2012
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 793,963
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 6.30 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author


Josh Lerner is the Schiff Professor of Investment Banking at Harvard Business School and co-director of the Productivity, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship Program at the National Bureau of Economic Research. He is recognized worldwide as an expert on how innovation works. His books include The Venture Capital Cycle, The Money of Invention (with Paul Gompers), Innovation and Its Discontents (with Adam Jaffe), and Boulevard of Broken Dreams.
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Table of Contents

1 The Search for Innovation and Growth 1

Part 1 The Traditional Model

2 Where R&D Came From 19

3 The Changing Face of Corporate R&D 37

Part 2 The Venture Alternative

4 Getting Venturesome 63

5 The Shortcomings of Venture Capital 87

Part 3 The Best of Both Worlds?

6 R&D, Meet VC: The Promise of Corporate Venturing 113

7 Leveling the Innovation Landscape 135

8 Improving the Design 157

Notes 179

Index 197

About the Author 207

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