How Breakthroughs Happen: The Surprising Truth About How Companies Innovate by Andrew Hargadon (Hardback, 2003)
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- DescriptionThis book presents lessons from the famous 'Invention Factories' past and present. Did you kw that the incandescent lightbulb first emerged some thirty years before Thomas Edison famously 'turned night into day'? Or that Henry Ford's revolutionary assembly line came from an unlikely blend of observations from Singer sewing machines, meatpacking, and Campbell's Soup? In this fascinating study of invation, engineer and social scientist Andrew Hargadon argues that our romantic tions about invation as invention are actually undermining our ability to pursue breakthrough invations. Based on ten years of study into the origins of historic inventions and modern invations from the lightbulb to the transistor to the Reebok Pump athletic shoe, How Breakthroughs Happen takes us beyond the simple recognition that revolutionary invations do t result from flashes of brilliance by lone inventors or organizations. In fact, invation is really about creatively recombining ideas, people, and objects from past techlogies in ways that spark new techlogical revolutions. This process of 'techlogy brokering' is so powerful, explains Hargadon, because it exploits the networked nature--the social side--of the invation process. Moving between historical accounts of labs and factory floors where past techlogical revolutions originated and field studies of similar processes in today's organizations, Hargadon shows how techlogy brokers create an enduring capacity for breakthrough invations. Techlogy brokers simultaneously bridge the gaps in existing networks that separate distant industries, firms, and divisions to see how established ideas can be applied in new ways and places, and build new networks to guide these creative recombinations to mass acceptance. How Breakthroughs Happen identifies three distinct strategies for techlogy brokering that managers can implement in their organizations. Hargadon suggests that Edison and his counterparts were smarter than the rest of us-they were simply better at moving through the networked world of their time. Intriguing, practical, and counterintuitive, How Breakthroughs Happen can help managers transform their own firms into modern-day invention factories.
- Author BiographyAndrew Hargadon is Assistant Professor of Technology Management at the Graduate School of Management at the University of California, Davis.
- Author(s)Andrew Hargadon
- PublisherHarvard Business Review Press
- Date of Publication01/07/2003
- SubjectCareers & Success
- Country of PublicationUnited States
- ImprintHarvard Business Review Press
- Weight571 g
- Width162 mm
- Height241 mm
- Spine30 mm
- Format DetailsCloth over boards
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