Connecting dots: Finding a common voice for Europe

Connecting dots is an end-to-end story combining the 10 most read articles on WAI blog over the last week.

As European startups are growingly considered as a key driver for growth, the rise of social priorities in economics is challenging the legal and regulatory framework currently in place around the digital disruption occuring across countries and sectors. With a bit of standback, experts remind we remain on a learning curve, with heightened needs to analyze social, business and technical requirements while enabling knowledge communities to drive change from the inside within cultures and companies. In the midst of these identified needs for change, diversity of opinions and situations appears as a blocking point when in fact, it could be used as an engine for growth.

Digital disruption and startups leading growth

Smart Innovation
Smart Innovation

Europe is building economic strength through the rise of startup ecosystems. Economists remain cautious with regards to the need for longer term approaches.

The number of institutional funding sources in EU and US have increased by 85% between 2009-2013, according to TechCrunch. The EU added to over 900 seed-stage deals per year. But the average amount of investment at seed stage has been decreasing in EU between 2010 and 2013, when it has increased in the US, a possible signal of under-capitalization of European companies. As the writer explains, “the reduced time between rounds in Europe unfortunately signals that entrepreneurs are being forced to refocus on fundraising more quickly at the expense of building and scaling a product and the business.”

Read more: The Big Picture: Let there be digital, Uneven risks and uneven rewards

From a more generic viewpoint, a more human approach to economics is highlighted as a critical need for change. The rise of social priorities is an example of this paradigm.

Developing social inclusiveness on political and economical areas is identified as a short term requirement to sustain growth on the long term. On top of developing diversity on gender and cultural levels, politics and economics can be drastically improved by addressing pressing social issues through systemic and intelligent change. To define such an approach, turning tables enables to look into so far unexplored areas while harnessing the power of diversity to revive sources of innovation.

Read more: Turning the tables

Digital technologies are invading economics discussions and show a great potential for growth. European countries such as France are yet to define the appropriate legal and regulatory framework to enable such digital growth to fully benefit to companies as well as society.

Governments in Europe have great expectations on the digital technologies. Yet they are still to best define the needs, the plans, and the solutions to address social and economic issues. In her article for Maddyness, Anaïs Richardin concludes: “Although France has initiated a vast international development plan through the French Tech initiative, the country keeps sending contradictory signs, including the witch hunting organized against AirBnB or the multiple court cases targeting Uber.”

Read more: The digital challenge: Politics and Economics

More generally speaking, the digital disruption occurring across countries, sectors, cultures and companies urges global communities to answer critical questions about freedom, security and privacy.

The Internet has thrown us in an virtual environment of virtual freedom, opinion variety and sometimes conflicts. Information and data that can be used either for good or bad purposes. It leaves us with the responsibility of judgement, which is a great, if not the most important one. How do we, as one global community interacting on one global platform, draw the line between good and bad, that is sharing freely and protection our freedom of privacy?

Read more: Privacy, sharing 2.0 and synergies that save more than money

An on-going story of change

Constructive Thinking
Constructive Thinking

From a philosophical standpoint, experts highlight the on-going creation process that has led to our technological development throughout history. If this can be tracked by a story about innovation and change, it may well build our common story for humanity as well.

Coming down from mounts into its deepest abyss,
Ocean once topped the heads of the hills,
Until storm brought it back to the sea,
And then back to the shore rejected it.
Took it back, gave it back: thus by age eroded,
It endured storms, flows and winds:
Finally, among these high contemporary mountains,
This marble once was rock, and now it is a grain.
But throughout time, air, rain and soil,
The story of this sand is the story of the world.

Read more: Scientific poetry, the science of emotions

It seems experts and analysts are exploring potentials and impacts in parallel of developing technologies, perhaps overlooking human needs, social, technical and business models that would bring shared value to their ideas.

Although AI brings a strong appetite to market, the dependencies surrounding the delivery of adequate services and solutions seem to outweigh the business model maturity. With an on-going debate on long term value add of such services with regards to the economic changes AI may generate, and questions on human place in technology, experts and analysts provide a dynamic market overview of automation, machine learning and neural network researches, with the Internet of Things and Big Data as key enabler for future AI services.

Read more: The human questions behind AI business models

Change is therefore also driven from the inside, with communities being shaped around shared needs and values that also include customers and goes beyond known barriers.

Company cultures are described by innovation experts and analysts as evolving towards professional and social communities where individuals need to understand what their role and value are to maximise their impact while optimizing their personal development. As a result, innovation in future company cultures will be led by communities able to develop the human values and visions they need to create the best possible solution within commonly understood context and priorities.

Read more: InnoGraph: Communities, Cultures and Companies

Using diversity as a creative engine

Innovation and diversity
Innovation and diversity

As a result, great difficulties remain in the European future, ranging from economic crisis to political struggles to agree on common plans and developments.

The Grexit situation and the release of unemployment rates over the EU zone are placing Europe in the difficult position of gauging the priorities of firefighting and building a longer term environment to develop sustainable growth. In the midst of this challenge, analysts and experts share their views, whether inside or outside the European scope, of how Europe uses digital as a growth lever, how they manage to develop as a team and what are the outlook of a cooperative innovation policy for the EU.

Read more: InnoMetrics: Europe goes to the board

Remember, as said, this is a learning path. And the technologies we develop also happen to enable a greater, richer and deeper learning from each others, from customer behaviours to organizational efficiencies.

We are indeed at a very early stage of using algorithm based marketing and we are far from including all of the factors that might influence or cause customer behaviors. But as Daniel Kehrer explains on Forbes, “The hardest part is creating crisp insights readily translatable into decisions and actions by a fully-aligned organization. Those insights must be based on a holistic (non-siloed; online/offline) view of marketing, imbibed with a data-driven mindset.” Noel Yuhanna and Mike Gualtieri remind on the Wall Street Journal “The key to success is implementing a multidimensional view that helps individualize and contextualize customer experiences, deliver new customer insights, and create new opportunities for businesses to deliver differentiated experiences.”  

Read more: Market Roadmap: New Strategy, New Marketing

All in all, the solution to define a common ground and common values for Europe may well reside in countries and communities ability to listen to each other, constructively paying attention to differences, valueing them to turn the diversity of voices and tones into a creative engine leading to long term and sustainable growth.

Innovation is being defined at all time by anyone on any point of this globe. The very singularity of innovation is that it is a concept which is always under construction and challenges status quo to build a path to improvement. It can concern products, processes, practices. It drives investments, brand value, shareholders benefits. It creates jobs, transforms economy, links societies together. It encourages knowledge sharing, overseas meetings, unlimited creativity with the power of collaboration and open innovation. Voices and points of view differ invariably, but divergence and diversity are good: they provide different stand points and methodologies to understand a picture in multiple dimensions. WAI has been looking at many facets of today’s innovation voice. Here is what it sounds like through a high level segmentation of online innovation information providers.

Read more: Innovation voices, who says what?

weareinnovation.org  has released a management report combining experts and analysts thought leadership to turn diversity into a success story. Find out more here

 

 

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