Words from our visiting scholar: Suman Lodh

I am a visiting scholar at the Lally School (RPI), working on the Radical Innovation project of Dr. Gina O’Connor. I had the opportunity to attend the Corporate Entrepreneurship Conference, June 2010 at RPI. The two-day thought-provoking discussions, presentations, speeches of panel of experts…were really like giving the power of “Grabbing Lightning”. From the researchers characteristics-“Truth, Beauty and Justice” to the corporate excellence-“Shifting the Paradigm to Schumpeter 2.0”, the conference had lots to learn. However at the end of the day, a few ideas kept on striking me that how the risk of inaction (or taking care of the opportunity lost) is, in practice, looked upon by the young corporate entrepreneurs and at the same time the career issue of the entrepreneurs has enough incentive to undertake breakthrough innovation project.

CE literature suggests that the density and quality of relationship among firms and supporting institute are not sufficient to determine the innovative capabilities of a firm. My feeling is that, we need highly mobile and technically skilled entrepreneurs (apart from Scientists) to adopt the innovation strategic initiatives. In fact, to reduce the cost of information, established firms use their existing assets as long as the innovation in the industry remains incremental. But new entrants or the entrepreneurs with their new strategy of ‘recombining’ the existing technologies (controlling for their overhead costs) can introduce radical innovations in the sense that they make existing technology obsolete for greater reward.

Looking forward to attend another such conference at Lally School.

Suman Lodh
PhD Student, Department of Economics
University of Bergamo, Bergamo, Italy