Beth Stackpole wrote an article for MIT Sloan School of Management titled Location matters as companies get their innovation mojo back.

« Despite myriad challenges from lockdowns to interruptions of global supply chains, the idea that proximity helps inspire novel ideas and produce disruptive products has endured. In an innovation ecosystem, organizations engage with a diverse range of external players to accelerate their innovation cycles, a phenomenon that has led to geographic hotspots for innovation from Silicon Valley and New York, to Shenzhen, China and Cape Town, South Africa.  »

« In these ecosystems, ideas move more seamlessly from inception to impact thanks to the coming together of five key stakeholder groups: universities, government, corporations, entrepreneurs, and risk capital. »

« We will see that smaller-scale ecosystems — supported by digital collaboration technologies — are going to thrive and be very vibrant,” said Murray, citing locales like Leeds, England and Belfast, Northern Ireland. “In fact, they may be more vibrant because people don’t want to go back into the gigantic ecosystems of the past.”  »

« Hybrid models. Mirroring what’s happening with the return to the office, there will be fresh takes on the innovation ecosystem, with variations that pair in-person and geographically distributed teams, and leverage both digital and physical forms of engagement. There is also an emerging concept of an inter-ecosystem network whereby a successful ecosystem syncs up with other such ecosystems, and a realization that, while we need to go global with innovation, we also need to think local and extend the innovation ecosystem to the local heartland.“The flux and disruption from the pandemic give us a chance to do things differently,” Budden said.  »

« As organizations move ahead with the twists and turns of re-imagining ecosystems and the future of innovation, one path is consistently clear: the human dimension will remain central to the equation, which means companies will need to be creative and strategic about ecosystem engagement.

Said Murray: “Face-to-face interaction is going to remain at a premium, and that’s going to be a scarce resource that we’ll have to think about differently.” »

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