Stakeholder engagement sucking

Stakeholder Engagement Sucks View more presentations from dan mcquillan. I liked Dan McQuillan’s Social Engagement Sucks slideshare. (click here if you can’t see it above.) Stakeholder engagement is a management cliche in dire need of some shaking up and Dan takes some good swipes at it here. I especially liked Engagement is a platitude that […]


So Viv and I are going to run a workshop together on May 13th in Sydney organised by the excellent Matt Moore (no relation). We’re calling it Crumbs! and here’s the blurb on Matt’s site. I suppose this is the nub of it: We’re going to reveal our own prejudices about facilitating change and innovation […]

Podcast: The tyranny of excellence

Update cue twilight zone theme. Interesting coincidence here’s Hugh‘s cartoon of the day: Viv McWaters and I are developing a workshop called Crumbs! We look at how creativity is not about big ideas and sudden leaps of insight. It’s much more incremental, and involves closer attention to the detail of the present and how we […]

Communities of practice

I went to David Gurteen’s Knowledge Cafe last night. It’s a mercifully simple and conversational format much in the style of World Cafe. The theme was the future of communities of practice. I was struck that in some organisations, enthusiasts for informal networking are still having to deal with pomposity from senior management. The latter […]

The perils of small worlds

I’m still mining Keith Sawyer’s Group Genius for insights; the more I re-read it the more useful and powerful I think his research is. One nuggest he reports is the study done by Brian Uzzi of Northwestern University and Jarrett Spiro of Stanford. They studied the community of creatives – directors choreographers composers etc etc […]

Massively collaborative mathematics

Keith Sawyer highlights an article from Nature. It describes how a complex mathematical theorem is solved by massive collaboration hosted on a blog. Here’s a key point that Keith identifies from the piece: For the first time one can see on full display a complete account of how a serious mathematical result was discovered. It […]

Relationships before ideas

From the time we were little children my brother.. and myself lived together played together, worked together and, in fact, thought together. We usually owned all of our toys in common, talked over our thoughts and aspirations so that nearly everything that was done in our lives has been the result of conversations, suggestions and […]

Incentives, innovation, community

I just posted about Umair’s suggestion about a mega-version of the netflix prize. I’ve been involved with some of NESTA’s many open innovation projects (here’s Roland on one of their latest.) It occurs to me that I and others sometimes make a default assumption about incentives and competition when setting these things up. This morning […]

Born Social

Keith Sawyer reports on a new book by Michale Tomasello Why We Cooperate. Studies of infants suggest that the urge to help others is innate, and not learned. Tomasello’s book presents data showing that infants as young as 18 months old try to help others. For example, if they see an unrelated adult who needs […]

Innovation with a capital I

I’ve been enjoying James Gardner’s blog, especially since he moved from his bank to the Department of Work and Pensions. I get the sense that with this move he’s able to speak more clearly about the issues of supporting innovation in organisations. His latest post Innovation Backlash recounts the catch-22 in which Heads of Innovation […]