Open innovation is now a fundamental capability for nations and regions


I have just participated via Skype in a BBC Creative Collisions debate in Northern Ireland, centered around how the media landscape is changing, and the implications of the rise of open innovation.

Some of the comments from the locals involved in the debate were that while there is ample talent and innovation in Northern Ireland, there is not the same attitude to collaboration and information sharing that there is for example in Hollywood or Silicon Valley.

I emphasized that while collaboration within Northern Ireland will be critical for competing on a global stage, it will also be essential to be able to draw on global capabilities. The skills of vision, project management, production, and more can be at the summit – or part – of a global distributed team. Small nations and regions in particular must have a mentality, not of lauding their own world-beating talent, but of being able to marshall capabilities across borders.

There are fundamental attitudes that are required to do this well, but also skills and capabilities, embedded into specific organizations and also the broader business ecosystem. Nations and regions that do not excel at open innovation will find challenging times ahead.