Last week I gave a conference at a company’s Open Innovation Fair. There were General Managers, Country Heads, CTOs and Business Unit Heads from multiple Fortune 500 EU companies that were attending the fair. Before I started out, the CTO of a prominent German company was asked what was the  most significant challenge to innovation. He replied instantly: “building an innovation-friendly culture”.

The term “strategic innovation” has often a fuzzy meaning. It’s used to mean important innovation, or urgent innovation. Sometimes, “strategic innovation” may refer to C-level innovation projects. Each of these terms provide a shed of light on the meaning of “strategic innovation”, but they fail to answer a more fundamental question on the purported strategic nature of innovation. In other words, what is it…