Innovation, mobility and change: this is the picture of the global world today. The revolution in the way of thinking also applies to countries, regions, and to each and every single enterprise. IT infrastructure, cooperation networks and modern design are the benchmarks of this new global perspective.
“Itis the handful of extremely creative people who are the source of innovations”, says Adam Drobot, Ph.D., of Telcordia Technologies Ltd., Texas, USA. “These people could be referred to as the seeds of growth and development. We have to look after them, offer them the best possible living conditions, create more Silicon Valleys if necessary.”
Innovation is the key to future success. Innovative enterprises contribute to the innovativeness of the entire economy. The new perception needs a great promotional effort; only 1% of Polish companies see innovation as a source of their future growth. Fundamental structural and systemic changes will be introduced to enable the promotion of innovations in all areas, including establishing new rules for funding scientific research and institutions.
The task is not easy
According to Professor Jan Węglarz of Poznań University of Technology, no innovations will be feasible in the economy unless a modern IT infrastructure is installed in research organizations. In Poland, and particularly in Wielkopolska, the issue came on the agenda early enough and we were able to build an appropriate structure, thereby enabling the researchers and scientists to provide business with an extensive offer. “Innovation is, briefly, converting ideas into money”, says Christian Ketels, Ph.D. at Harvard Business School. “It takes numerous changes and a lot of time to become truly innovative, and investment in education and innovative infrastructure should be the first step, along with attracting and taking on creative people. Also, it is not recommended to follow Western patterns precisely, as there is no single ready-made solution that fits all”, Ketels adds. “Poland has to elaborate its own methods. I am convinced that active, fit clusters that cooperate with the authorities and public institutions, yet remain autonomous and independent, can become the engines of development”.
Design and creative economics
Design is a powerful tool in regional development. In northern Sweden, the Swedish Industrial Design Foundation (SVID) was founded in 2002. “We started off with a working expert meet-up”,says Christer Ericson, SVID’s director. “Architects, interior designers, lighting designers, journalists, entrepreneurs, environmentalists, town planners, graphic artists and landscape engineers together drew the initial sketch for the changes. The next step was to help companies to introduce a design-based management style. Over the last 6 years their competitiveness has increased, costs have been significantly reduced, revenue has multiplied, environmental benefits have been gained, and modern, innovative products and services are being supplied. All this means the development of these businesses and strengthening of these brands”.
The German government founded the International Design Centre (IDZ) in Berlin back in 1968. Now, nearly 167,000 jobs in the city are in the ‘creative industries’. Business processes and innovation networks are active, the city boasts a significant proportion of young talents, and finally, the number of state and private universities is amazing. Berlin Adlershof Technology Park employs 13,500 people in 413 companies, 12 research institutes and 6 Humboldt University research centres. “We are witnessing the transformation from an information society into a knowledge society”, says Silke Claus, Ph.D, CEO, IDZ.