Innovation and Influencer Overload? What to do?

December 30

In my search for organizations directly involved in the IT innovation ecosystem, I Googled for hours by scrambling search word permutations like “IT Innovation” or “IT R&D” or “Information Technology Innovation” etc.   The results were a little disappointing:  Little truly specific to “IT Innovation” bubbled up, though the Web swarms with sites about “Innovation” in general.  So I spent some time perusing those sites.  It proved rather overwhelming and nearly fruitless – it was a painstaking process to separate useful sites from site fallow, dead or merely short stabs at discussing how important or cool “innovation” is.  There were so many “innovation” (not “IT innovation”) sites out there that there were several “innovation” aggregation sites – sites about innovations sites.

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The ITIF: Watching the IT Innovation Forest

December 22, 2009

The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation – ITIF – is a Washington D.C. based non-profit think tank, about 3.5 years old, acting as an analysis and commentary source for technology innovation policy. The staff consists of mixed bag of techies, legislative and policy types. The board (interestingly there is a longer list of board members than staff members – could only happen in D.C.) includes two senators and two congress-people as honorary co-chairs. As eye-catching as the extensive and influential board are the “Affiliated Experts” which boasts real-world IT luminaries like Irving Wladawsky-Berger who was a leader in the realm of IBM’s innovations for nearly four decades.

Why care about and track this innovation policy think tank? As ITIF states, “…the mission of the… ITIF is to help policy makers at the federal and state levels to better understand the nature of the new innovation economy and the types of public policies needed to drive innovation, productivity and broad-based prosperity for all Americans.” Think of ITIF as a powerful advocate, educator and policy voice to help push forward the “innovation economy” with a focus on IT.

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