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2011/2012  KAN-CM_J31  Flash-of-genius: From creative insight to successful innovation

English Title
Flash-of-genius: From creative insight to successful innovation

Course Information

Language English
Point 7,5 ECTS (225 SAT)
Type Elective
Level Full Degree Master
Duration One Semester
Course Period Autumn
Please see e-campus
Time Table Please see course schedule at e-Campus
Study Board
Study Board for MSc in Economics and Business Administration
Course Coordinator
  • Lee Davis - Department of Innovation and Organizational Economics
Administration: Tuyala Bernardo Rasmussen - tbr.ino@cbs.dk
Main Category of the Course
  • Business Law
  • Management of Information and Knowledge Management
  • Corporate and Business Strategy

Taught under Open University-Taught under open university.
Last updated on 29 maj 2012
Learning Objectives
After completing this course, students should demonstrate that they can:
• Understand the theories, concepts, tools and cases covered in the course
• Recognize the management challenges that arise at each stage of the innovative process from the “flash of genius” to successful commercialization
• Apply different theories and concepts in strategic analysis of concrete company cases
• Discuss legal problems that may arise in attempting to protect and promote a firm’s innovation strategy
• Critically assess the scope, limits and complementarities of applying the theories, concepts and principles to issues covered in the course
• Understand how to write a project report based on a combination of the course readings and examples from business
Individual oral examination based on mini-project
Flash-of-genius: From creative insight to successful innovation:
Assessment Oral with Written Assignment
Marking Scale 7-step scale
Censorship Internal examiners
Exam Period Winter Term
Aids Open Book, Written and Electronic Aid is permitted
Duration 20 Minutes

Individual oral exam on the basis of a mini-project. Students may take their mini-projects to the exam.
Course Content

This course explores the key management challenges involved in generating value from inventive insights. We take students through the innovation process progressively, from the initial flash-of-genius through commercial development. At each stage, students will reflect on the relevant management choices and learn the economic, legal, and managerial skills to facilitate informed decisions. The course consists of three modules.

1. Creativity and Corporate Opportunity: What conditions tend to enhance creativity, and what conditions tend to kill it?How can inventors know when to move forward with their creative flashes? How can managers identify creative employees – and persuade them to reveal their inventive insights? How can creative insights best be protected via IP rights like patents, copyrights, trademarks?

2.From Drawing Board to Development: What criteria can inventors – and/or their managers – use to pick the winners, and reject the losers? When should the employee inventor consider leaving the firm and create a new venture? What happens when the creative insight “hits” organizational reality? How can companies develop profitable IP strategies?

3. Creating Commercial Value: What factors should management take into consideration when timing the entry of their innovation on the market? When might it make sense to engage in R&D joint ventures, or license out the rights? What should the company be aware of legally with regard to licensing and contracting? What are the main implications for managers?

The course's development of personal competences:

Working from theories on the sources of invention, technology management, defining corporate commercial objectives, and the use of law, this course aims to develop personal managerial competencies both by introducing students to the relevant literature, and progressively taking them through the successive stages of corporate invention and innovation. Students will learn how to recognize the conditions under which the flash-of-genius might arise, how to identify and develop valuable creative insights, how to obtain effective IP rights at all stages (including managing the contracting process and drawing up a contract), and how to achieve technology transfer within and without the company. Classroom discussions will integrate theory with practice.

Teaching Methods
A combination of lectures, class discussions, cases and simulations building on perspectives from the readings on both strategy/management and law, plus practical examples from business.

Creativity and Corporate Opportunity:

  • Amabile, T.M. & Mueller J.S. 2007. Studying creativity, its process and its antecedents: An exploration of the componential theory of creativity, in J. Zhou and C. Shalley (Eds.) Handbook of Organizational Creativity Mahwah, N.J: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  • Augsdorfer, P. (2008).”Managing the unmanageable,” Research-Technology Management, July-August, 2008, pp.41-47
  • De Bono, Edward (1990). Lateral Thinking: A Textbook of Creativity (London, Penguin Books), pp. 25-43.
  • Dyer, J.H., Gregersen, H.B. and Christensen, C.M. 2009. The innovator’s DNA. Harvard Business Review, December, 60-67.
  • Perry-Smith, J. (2008). When being social facilitates creativity: Social networks and creativity within organizations. in J. Zhou and C. Shalley (Eds.) Handbook of Organizational Creativity Mahwah, N.J: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, pp. 189-210.
  • Excerpts from Miller, Roger and William E. Hollowell, Business Law: Text and Exercises (West Legal Studies in Business, latest edition).

From Drawing Board to Development:

  • Audia, P.G. and Rider, C.K. (2005). A Garage and an idea: What more does an entrepreneur need? California Management Review 48 (1), Fall, pp. 6-28.
  • Bonabeau, E, Bodick, N. and Armstrong, R.W. 2008. A more rational approach to new product development, Harvard Business Review, March, pp. 96-102
  • Cooper, R.G. (2009), How companies are reinventing their idea-to-launch methodologies, Research-Technology Management, March-April, pp. 47-57.
  • Firth, A. and Phillips, J. (2001).Introduction to Intellectual Property Law. Fourth edition (Butterworths).
  • Elmquist, M. and Le Masson, P. 2009. The value of a ‘failed’ R&D project: an emerging evaluation framework for building innovative capabilities, R&D Management 39 (2), pp. 136-152
  • Fifth, A. and Phillips, J. (2001). Introduction to Intellectual Property Law. Fourth edition (Butterworths).
  • McCarthy, I.P., Tsinopoulos, C., Allen, P. and Rose-Andersen, C. 2006. New product development as a complex adaptive system of decisions. Journal of Product Innovation Management: 23: 437-456

· Reid, S.E./De Brentani, U. 2004. The fuzzy front end of new product development for discontinuous innovations: a theoretical model,Journal of Product Innovation Management 21, pp. 170-184.

Creating Commercial Value

  • Arora, A, and Gambardella, A.(2010). Ideas for rent: an overview of markets for technology, Industrial and Corporate Change 19 (3), pp. 775-803
  • Davis, L.N. (2008). “Licensing Strategies of the New ‘Intellectual Property Vendors,” California Management Review, Winter,50 (2), pp. 6-30.
  • Kim and Mauborgne (2005) Blue Ocean Strategy (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press), pp. 101-115, 185-190.
  • Latham, D.A. (2008). International Considerations in Intellectual Property Licensing, The Licensing Journal (March), pp. 1-6
  • Markides, C.C. and Geroski, P.A. (2005), Fast Second: How Smart Companies Bypass Radical Innovation to Enter and Dominate New Markets, pp. 1-16, 119-138.

Nambisan, S. and Sawhney, M. 2007. A buyer’s guide to the innovation bazaar. Harvard Business Review, June, pp. 109-118.