Are we at risk of stagnating when it comes to creating new ideas? Can we continue to be fresh by incorporating elements from unexpected sources?

Innovation is the new synergy. A word that sounds sexy, but is so overused it has virtually lost any meaning. Contrast that with actual innovation, which seems to be getting a bit rare. As David Brooks wrote late last year, about the only thing a time traveler from the ‘70s would be thunderstruck by today is information technology. Airplanes are pretty much the same, as are power plants, food production and hospitals.

Brooks attributes this innovation stagnation to three factors. First, the double hump of of the learning curve. Second, the loss of utopian élan. And third, the absence of culture clash.

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