Deep Innovation ventures – those that are enabled by basic research or a scientific breakthrough, and that usually require substantial resources and five to 20 years to materialize as a commercial success – are capable of transforming human existence. Unfortunately, they often begin with a group of scientists who are unaware of the commercial application of their work, or even of a problem in need of such an application. Therefore, they may end up publishing a paper and moving on to other things. How to prevent this is a recurrent theme in the present issue.
The authors outline and discuss a number of challenges – some financial, others organizational and cultural – which apply across multiple research domains. These include, among others:
- Need for cross-sector collaboration
- Academic silos
- Need for institutional solutions
- Finding problems for solutions
- Need for patience and risk-taking
The authors point out that at the end of the day, the crucial factor for enabling Deep Innovation is commitment – and more commitment: commitment from the key players, including policy makers, investors, researchers, and entrepreneurs. This includes time commitment, commitment to high risk tolerance, commitment to invest capital – commitment to see the innovations make it across the valley and actualize their potential for doing good.
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Appeared in the issue: Coller Venture Review — 2016 -3 — Deep Innovation Issue