Innovation Brief Insights

June 08, 2021

Today, we restart the publication of small reflections on innovation, with a text by Jorge F. Gomes.

When it comes to innovation, two ways of starting the process are discussed, known in English asnnovation push e innovation pull.
The first is associated with the effect of technological innovation, with new ideas and concepts, and has its origins in Research & Development. The second concerns the needs of the market and consumers, which invite innovation, and derives from Marketing.
The distinction serves to understand the innovation that existed during the pandemic, which is mainly of the innovation pull.
Indeed, in some sectors the innovative activity has been extraordinary, such as in the pharmaceutical industry.
Other industries, such as tourism and catering, are trying to reinvent themselves, given the tremendous adversities experienced.
And still others, like hotels, may never be the same again. But some phenomena do not fit entirely into the dichotomy.
The focus of pushand pullis the same: creating or responding to the needs of consumers or customers.
However, where to classify innovation with a distinct focus, such as that directed at societies and the environment?
The environment as an abstract entity does not have the means to pay or repay the investment in innovation that meets its needs. And any organization will think twice before developing technology that creates needs for what the environment pays or pays back.
Now it seems increasingly obvious that without innovation in social and environmental terms, the sustainability of the current model of economic progress could be at stake.
Ultimately, this third way may well become the only one capable of solving the problems that accumulate and worsen over the years.
But it should probably start with a fourth type of innovation: in the way of thinking and being in society and on the planet.