Tuesday, August 30, 2005

What is an Innovation Commons?

An innovation commons is a space (physical or virtual) that enables innovation through the mutual and interdependent creativity of its members. It has the following characteristics:

  • Open system (bounded)
  • Everyone contributes
  • Everyone can use the results
  • Members who don’t contribute are excluded
  • Fluid & flexible
  • An abundant resource system
Other names that people have used to describe this type of system are open source, open innovation, democratic innovation, inclusive innovation, peer to peer (P2P), smart mobs and free agent collaboration. I think that the innovation commons concept, whatever it ends up being named, is one of the most important developments in how people work together.

Some attempts at creating an innovation commons have been successful, but most have failed. Why? What are principles of a successful innovation commons?

Currently I am conducting a survey of the values of a successful innovation commons. This survey requires thought and will take you 20 to 30 minutes to complete. I ask you to rank 125 values of a successful innovation commons. You'll find the values themselves and the process of rating the values interesting and useful. The values are general and can be applied to any organizational use. In addition, if you provide me your name and e-mail address when you take the survey, I will send you a copy of the final results. In addition, if you join the Innovation Commons Network, you'll be able to participate in all of the activities and benefits of the network including the free web conference.

To take the survey click here.

To join the network, send me an e-mail requesting to join.

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