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23.01.2013 Public Seminar by Steven Geiger (Chief Operating Officer of Skolkovo Foundation (until December 2012)) …

23.01.2013 Public Seminar by Steven Geiger (Chief Operating Officer of Skolkovo Foundation (until December 2012))
"The Innovation Trap (and How to Avoid it)"

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  • 1. The Innovation Trap And How To Avoid It New Economic School Guest Lecturer on Innovation: Steven Geiger January 23, 2013 Moscow
  • 2. Topics• Why countries are chasing innovation• Common traps they fall into• Specific challenges to innovation in Russia• How to avoid innovation traps and succeed 2
  • 3. Why Countries areChasing Innovation 3
  • 4. Why countries are chasing innovation• Prosperity through economic growth• National security• Fear of “falling behind”• It’s trendy 4
  • 5. Prosperity is no accident It is the result of planning, investment, risk-taking and innovation 5
  • 6. US R&D spending 6
  • 7. McKinsey innovation map 7
  • 8. So most countries chase innovation Hsinchu Tainan Leading global innovation centers 8
  • 9. If only it were this easy . . . 9
  • 10. Typical InnovationTraps They Fall Into 10
  • 11. “We must be like Silicon Valley”• Tendency to blindly copy California model• But SV is a culture, not a place. . . easy to copy culture?• Timing issues; is SV model even still relevant?• You’ll never lead through imitation; find your own style 2% to make it Who do you want to be? 50% for innovative IP 11
  • 12. “We must have a shiny new city”• “Field of Dreams” approach• Try to avoid the “Edifice Complex”• Remember, these were all built in a student dorm or garage: Masdar City Skolkovo Songdo 12
  • 13. “The parts will make a whole”• The abiogenesis approach: abstract, sterile assembly of “innovation components” that magically come to life Coacervates Alexander Oparin• Create an “innovation ecosystem” …and hope the “magic” happens.• Magic doesn’t happen, you make it happen. 13
  • 14. Think of innovation as a Rubik’s Cube ResearchEntrepre Infrastr • 6 different elements, & neurs academic ucture communities • Different needs Large Govt. VCs • Any change affects all Corp. Policy 14
  • 15. Think of innovation as a Rubik’s CubeA few changes to anyside and pretty soonyou have this: Or worse, thisLooks simple, eh? Only a holistic approach succeeds. And experience helps. 15
  • 16. Specific Challenges to Innovation in Russia 16
  • 17. General ranking not great: 51st Source: The Global Innovation Index 2012 (Insead, WIPO) 17
  • 18. But innovation “efficiency” not bad Russia • Just slightly below trend line • Reasonable chances to improve 18
  • 19. The C-Word • Karamzin said it best: «Воруют» (“They steal”) • Innovation will struggle in Russia with current levels of corruption • “Brain drain” will accelerate • State innovation projects must be the vanguard of honesty 19
  • 20. Russia needs to “close the gap” 20
  • 21. Russia needs to “close the gap” 21
  • 22. Russia needs to “close the gap” 22
  • 23. Weaknesses in projects like Skolkovo http://www.rbcdaily.ru/politics/opinion/562949985372676• Scope is too broad (laser or flashlight?)• Misalignment of shareholder-management interests• Overly focused on building “shiny new city”• Lack of internationalization The good news: not difficult to solve these 23
  • 24. Recommendations forSuccessful Innovation 24
  • 25. 1. Don’t force the glass slipper• Innovation can’t be forced (though it can be encouraged)• Accept that Silicon Valley was a rare convergence of factors• Leverage your culture and strengths, don’t blindly imitate 25
  • 26. 2. Be careful what you wish for… 26
  • 27. 3. Can you handle the truth? Innovation often requires: • Great individual freedom • Tolerating unconventional ideas and lifestyles • Open exchange of information and ideas • High tolerance for failure • High risk-takingIn short, innovation is freedom: can you handle that? 27
  • 28. 4. Set “stretch” yet achievable goalsUAE example: can a tiny oil sheikhdom become a worldleader in cleantech and sustainability? You bet!• worlds largest offshore windfarm• worlds largest single operating CSP plant• worlds first CSP plant using molten salt as a transfer fluid• worlds first graduate-level research university dedicated to renewable energy• worlds largest renewable energy conference & expo (25,000 annual visitors)• permanent UN headquarters for International Renewable Energy Agency 28
  • 29. 5. Don’t blindly follow “the experts” They’re often wrong (Nice shoes, Albert) 29
  • 30. Discussion 30