Sunday, April 15, 2007

Injo at Global Innovation Summit in India

Innovation Journalism was on the agenda when the 1st Global Innovation Summit in India was arranged by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in collaboration with Dr. Charles Wessner of the US National Academy of Science (NAS).

The summit was headed by the CII chairman Dr. Surinder Kapur, and featured many of the top innovation leaders in India, representing industry, academia as well as government. I had the pleasure of being an invited speaker together with Prof. Clayton Christensen, who led a workshop on disruptive innovation.

Christensen's presented his ideas on how producers of low-cost innovations that turn large groups of non-consumers into consumers can pull the rug from beneath the incumbents. One example is the auto industry, and how Toyota managed to become the top dog from having started as a manufacturer of cheap low quality cars. This example is particularly pertinent in India, where Tata motors, the succesful domestic Indian automanufacturer is aiming at selling a car for under $2500. If they succeed, perhaps they can become a new Toyota? The tremendously large Indian population offers a huge amount of non-consumers, that can be turned into a powerful customer constituencies by low cost innnovations. Fuelled by a rapidly growing domestic market, perhaps India can make ripples across the world? This is definitely an interesting possibility!

The interest for Innovation Journalism is large. I met with editors of the major Indian business news publications, and was interviewed in the ADTV morning show. The IANS news agency (Indo Asian News Service) published a story (see next post).

Christensen's thoughts are definitely relevant also for the news business. India has excellent journalists, they are well educated, the job has a decent status, and best of all: the business is doing well. The growing literacy in India is providing many millions of new readers every year. The Indian media and entertainment industry is expected to grow by 18% per year until 2011, according to the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry! If the Indian news industry goes for innovation, watch out competitors in the rest of the world!

For those who are interested, the program for the Global Innovation Summit in India is attached.


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