The Future Of Innovation Serves Humanity Before Economy

Dr Lotte Darsø

The future of innovation will serve humanity first. Instead of business models we will have partnership models for innovation based on diversity, participation and co-creation. Economy will be considered a means to generate innovation and the economical profit that is produced will be fed back into new cycles of innovation FOR a sustainable world. The future of innovation depends, however, on the quality of our thinking and on the level of our moral development. It depends on the audacity of our visions and hopes for the world. It depends on learning from our mistakes and on using the wisdom gained.

Innovation is powerful. Through innovation we can solve the most important problems and challenges of the world, but through innovation we could also destroy and thus create even bigger problems. Inherent in innovation are the powers to create goods, services, communities, infrastructures and technologies. The future of innovation must be dedicated at serving humanity in creating sustainable food and health, in creating jobs, in creating community, in short it must focus on sustaining life. In the future nobody will waste energy, time or money on creating and producing yet another product only to compete with masses of similar products. On the contrary, people will serve the needs of the world by following their wildest dreams of creating products that make a difference. Products that help others survive and thrive, products that are well thought out as not endangering any species or planet earth.

There is much to be done. Every conscientious human being must mobilize his or her talent in order for our wanted future of innovation to materialize. I’m currently working with education and learning: Leadership and Innovation in Complex Systems ( HYPERLINK "" ). I strongly believe in learning as the way forward – not teaching, training or educating – but rather understood as providing fertile grounds for creating local and global learning communities, for connecting people, for hosting dialogues, and for developing leadership. We need new ideals and role models for leadership. We must support leaders, who CARE about people and planet – and profit, of course, but as a means, not an end - and who make wise decisions and know how to nurture and support people in creating genuine value. Innovation must have direction and must be meaningful to the people involved. We need leaders, who can lead corporations and multinationals through powerful and meaningful visions for creating beneficial global growth. We need courageous leaders, who value humans more than profit and who dare to open new doors and walk new routes for innovation. We need artful leaders, who are conscious of the multiplicity of forms, expressions and “languages” that can help surface human talents and resources, and help connect people across the planet around important challenges.

The future of innovation involves compassionate partnerships where people generate values and qualities, which will build a far more vital and durable economy than we experience today. The key to the future is, in fact, social innovation.

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Article © 2009 Dr Lotte Darsø. All rights reserved.

about the author...

Dr Lotte Darsø

Dr Lotte Darsø

affiliation:   University Of Aarhus

position:  Associate Professor in innovation

country:  Denmark

area of interest:  Social innovation, innovation pedagogies

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other books and writings by

Dr Lotte Darsø

Innovation in the Making

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Artful Creation: Learning-Tales of Arts-in-Business

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