Innovation & competitiveness
As a driver of economic growth, investment and consumption, innovation is also a means of overcoming price considerations and the intensification of price competition through differentiation and adding value to the offering.
Yet, Europe’s current innovative capabilities are not sufficient. Only 10 European companies are ranked in the 50 most innovative (2010 Bloomberg BusinessWeek worldwide ranking) while, over the last several years companies from emerging countries have continued to gain ground.
Today it seems essential to stimulate the innovativeness of European companies. In the global era, investments in research will not be enough. Indeed, it’s the road from successful research and its generated inventions to innovation and successful marketing. Thus, the Institute for innovation and competitiveness promotes a broad vision of innovation, one that integrates research with questions about usage, marketing, design and creation; while emphasizing the importance of economic models as a driver.
In the past years, innovation practices have evolved a great deal. The pressure put in costs and financing forces a re-engineering of conception processes. The convergence of products and services along with their accelerated renewal demands for new and unknown competencies. Economic models are changing. The increasing preoccupation with sustainable development supports the development of eco-conception and new ways of accessing products and services. The increasing involvement of customers in the innovation process results in the evolution of its processes and methods towards co-creation. And the development of ‘open innovation’ relies on contracts and alliances with organizations that have very different structures. All theses changes raise organizational, managerial, juridical and economical issues.
The paths to innovation are changing and the associated challenges are growing. This is why we call for a broad, cross-disciplinary approach to innovation which integrates firms, researchers, and policy makers in order to make mindsets evolve, as these are essential.