FIND InnoNuggets


Monday, March 21, 2011

How to be an Idea Flirt?

I think one needs to become an Idea Flirt as quickly as one can be

An Idea Flirt is one who engages with ideas for some time - and then with next ideas -

And more importantly flirt with as many ideas as you can same time.

From flirting with many ideas - some ideas will develop into longer relationships - may be a long term relationship.

With some one may get into a marriage - the trick for being a successful Idea Flirt - is to be keep on flirting with new ideas - even if you are in many long term relationships and every married to some of them.

This requires a continuous exploration of the field :) to search and open to have tea/coffees and even one night stands with some of the ideas! While you continue to be in stable marriages and long term relationships with many of the stable ideas!

One important point is to know - how and when to get out of a relationship and even marriage with ideas!

Further - never divorce your ideas - even if your relationship is dead!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

CII's India@75 - A Grassroots Initiative to develop an aligned vision of India

Yesterday I attended the CII Karnataka Annual Members Day 2011, at Bangalore. The theme was India@75- An Innovative Vision.

India@75 is attributed to Late Prof. C.K. Prahalad. The documents shared during the seminar, explains India@75 as a grassroots initiative to develop an aligned vision for our country shared by people from all geos and all walks of life.

India@75 aims to change the face of India through various development initiatives such as 100% literacy, globally employable workforce, world class infrastructure etc.

The key to achieving these three objectives is innovation in multiple dimensions

1. By 2022, India should be a global technology leader - inventing new and better technologies rather than replicating the technologies of other countries
2. India should produce world class researchers
3. Major need is Innovation in Energy - we should be self-sufficient in meeting our energy needs
4. In Agriculture Innovation in must - as it employs 60% of India's population directly or indirectly
5. Business and Innovation - need to go hand in hand - Leading edge R&D is must.
6. Urbanization and Infrastructure - world class Indian cities need to be designed, developed, maintained and evolved
7. Innovation in Healthcare sector is must

The second half of the seminar (after customary political/Government statements in the first half) was followed by a public session with 4 important talks.

Keynote address by S V Ranganath, Chief Secretary, Government of Karnataka

{Noted points from his talk in my notes }
  • Most of other countries first industrialized and then adopted democracy, India took reverse path - It adopted democracy and then moved towards industrialization - India has not done too bad as of now
  • Two points agenda - Governance and Innovation
  • Need for good governance - inclusive growth needed
  • The key problem - where Jobs are where people are - seems to a big disconnect in India
  • Coastal states are driving growth and inner states are driving population
  • There is no dearth of ideas, capital, people - the key is the land - In India land title is the root cause of major issues - "Home Grown Mafia" want to maintain the status-quo and not let any land reforms happen
  • Second problem of Governance is health and Education - Dearth of doctors/nurses - further pvt sector in healthcare is providing very poor quality and very heavy cost - How to regulate the pvt sector - rightly and properly?
  • Third governance problem - Police and law and Order - In this case there is no private sector - the poor man's recourse - is to seek solutions outside - Extreme Naxal movements are the result
  • Innovation and Creativity in dealing with these problems is needed - Innovation led economic growth - Innovation is driven by competition
  • India has been creating Innovation buzz by $3000 Car, $300 Computer and $30 Mobile phones
  • Environment for Innovation in India however needs to be created
  • In Jayant Narlikar's book "Scientific Age" - he list 10 key contributions by India in Science and Technology in last century - (a) Ramanujam in Mathematics (b) Meghnath Saha in Physics (c) S.N. Bose of Bose Einstein statistics (d) C.V. Raman of Raman effect (e) Molecular Biologist (G.N. Ramachandran) (f) Bhabha in Atomic energy (g) Green Revolution - M.S. Swaminathan (h) Space revolution by Vikram sarabhai (i) Superconductivity by CN Rao at IISc
  • Speaker added India making supercomputer in early 1990s as the 11th key coontribution.
  • One point he observed - none of the contributions of second half are path breaking - like the contributions of the first half of the century.
  • India Must focus on Science and technology
  • Innovation for Governance is the need
  • Innovation in Literacy
  • Innovation in Agriculture - utilize traditional knowledge as well
India need to focus on
  • Decentralization
  • Transparency
  • Education and
  • Technology

Keynote Speaker - Pankaj Chandra - IIM Bangalore

Excellence in Higher Education was his topic - and he qualified it with "what is holding us back"

India has Mountains to climb

He asked questions

  • Why are best and brightest not joining academia?
  • Can the society wait to invest in higher education?
  • Can India remain insular to global education influence?
He said Government of India invest 0.8% of GDP for Higher Education - which comes to about USD 3.7 Billion

Further Indian students go abroad per year about 150,000 which amounts to USD 2 Billion

So around 6 billion is available within India - hence it is not about money.

He claimed it is about "partially" Understood objectives of Higher Education

  • HE should be about advanced training not basic training -that should be over by Class XII. So Our students should be employable after Class XII.
  • Parity across Education Institutes is not the right method
  • Our Graduates are starved of "curiosity"
  • Broad educational mindset is missing
  • State is the key provider of HE
  • State as the source of funding and CONTROL - Funding as a mechanism of control
  • Society is a spectator
The speaker gave global HE models

  • US Univ System is the Top - Mix of private and public endowments, research drive
  • Oxbridge clan - also Ran
  • Weak Liberalization - European Univ system
  • Targeting winners - State univ of Singapore
  • New Experimentalists - Chinese education system - Entrepreneurial, building endowment, academic fervor
key areas of Innovation for HE

University Role
  • To answer society's dilemmas
  • preparing manpower
  • preparing thinking mind
  • cultural spaces
Autonomy of Institution
  • Perverse Centralization
  • Funding does not mean control
  • University or simply colleges
  • Role of regulatory accredition - self regulation

Accountability of academic and administration
  • Governance - recreating research base
  • Poor understanding of financing of higher education
  • Targeting needy users
Expansion of pvt capacity
  • Why we havent passed private university bill?
  • Vocational education - issue of capacity and mobility
Role of society
  • People who dont want to think
  • Where is the faculty
  • Less salaries
  • Funding for research? Research "pull" from industry

Dr. R. Bala was the next speaker - Innovation in social sector

He started with - Industry has grown despite government but society will not grow

Innovation word has its origin in Latin 1540 - meaning - Just to change, renew, refresh

He said - Karnataka has rampant "Innovation Corruption"

His key message "Stop innovating misgovernment" first - before talking about innovating in governance - it was clear response to the chief secretary

He gave a possible solution

when industry buy land from farmers - why cant they be given stake in the company - let the industry be a user farmer's land

Industrialization in rural areas
Information disclosure - how much is right
Information packaging

Service delivery focus
Look at the last mile problem for service delivery

One needs value based leadership

"Local development is Global development"

Society co-opted in corruption


one needs to LIVE THE CHANGE - sort of paraphrasing M.K. Gandhi's BE THE CHANGE!

Friday, March 18, 2011

SPICON 2011 in Chennai

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Innovating Customer Value - 14 Key Areas

Innovating Customer Value

Fourteen key business areas have been identified by our research. For each of these business areas, we propose a combination of Innovation Crafting frameworks that have proven their worth in diverse business domains. We offer these framework combinations as specific solutions. Further, our experience shows that each context will have its own nuances that require a customization of these frameworks. The Open Innovation Crafting frameworks are flexible and robust enough to design synergy with your specific context to craft relevant solutions to the problems you face.

How to increase productivity

  • Solve the right problem
  • Give the right job to right person
  • Understand the dependencies
  • Improving the communications
  • Have more experienced people
  • Work closely with the customer
  • Craft and work in the Blue Ocean – continuously
  • Expectation management
  • Conducive environment to produce – Infrastructure, conducive culture, Open door policy

Innovation Crafting is Ideas Empowerment. Power is the ability to change. When Ideas are empowered, Organizations grow through continuous learning and thriving in creativity. This is the only blueprint for a robust future. However, to attain the ideal state of idea empowerment, Innovation needs to be crafted. Unfortunately large organizations are ill-designed for Innovation. Enterprises are built on the principle of “continuity of same”, repetitive production and deterministic business.

The GIXBang that started in 1990 is leading the world into globalization and complexity. GIXBang is fed by and feeds greater levels of Innovation. We define Innovation as ideas empowerment. It needs ground level idea generation and implementation. Unfortunately organizations are not structured for innovation and learning – in fact the very structures kill learning and innovation. The organizations we know, provide

  • Chaotic Dumbness
    • High Threat Low Challenge
  • Automated Disjointedness
  • Passive Data Analysis

Whereas what we propose is to design organizations for

Pervasive Joy – Relaxed Alertness, Orchestrated Immersion and Active Experience Processing.

Complexity management across the supply chain

  • Connections; Dependencies; Relationships.
  • Outsource your Red Team
  • Open Innovation as implemented in Connect and Develop is the immediate result of Globalizing complexity.

Managing Complexity

  • Cross functional business and geographical boundaries
  • Insufficient information
  • Managing complexity trade-offs require senior business leadership
  • Long learning duration – Ongoing Process

Complexity Reduction

  • Average costs are increasing more than additional sales.
  • Impacting value drivers
  • Impacting cost drivers
  • Reducing Non Value adding complexity
  • Different forms of complexity taken to market

How to grow/scale up

  • Increasing market transparency – differentiation is difficult
  • Competitive advantage erodes faster than ever before
  • More effective control over their operations
  • Value of complexity

Six Thinking Dimensions

  • Idea generation (Lean Inventive Systems Thinking - LIST)
    • Systems Thinking
    • Lean Thinking
    • Inventive Thinking
  • Implementation
    • Networked Thinking
    • Collaborative Thinking
    • End-to-end Thinking
    • Evolutionary Approaches
    • Set-based explorations

Globalization/Complexity/Innovation (The GIX World)

  • Globalization
    • Integration
      • Economic
      • Technological
      • Personal
      • Political
  • Complexity
    • Size
    • Depth and extent of Interactions
  • Innovation
    • (New) Ideas
    • (New) Ideas applied (in New ways)
    • (New) Ideas applied (in New ways) in (new) contexts
    • (New or Different) Results produced

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Situational Awareness Windows (SAWS) for Disaster management

Situational Awareness Windows (SAWS) for Disaster Management – A systems approach

Navneet Bhushan, Crafitti Consulting Private Limited (

Bangalore, India, E-mail:


The rapidly globalizing world is creating complexities that demand unprecedented capabilities from decision-makers who find themselves in the middle of situations that can lead to disasters rapidly. These situations are called crises and/or disasters. These situations are characterized by extremely intertwined interplay of many factors in a volume of time and space. Decision-makers need capabilities to understand the interplay of these factors in time and space, comprehension of their meaning, and rapid projection of their interplay in near future to be able to comprehend and potentially conceive courses of action that lead to robust mitigation of crisis/disaster or managing the impact of crisis/disaster if the events have occurred. These capabilities have been termed as situational awareness (SA). A comprehensive SA is important in all decision making scenarios, however, it is critical in case of disaster and crisis situations as the disaster (man-made or natural) by definition lead to extreme loss for the affected community. Combining the 9 windows or 9 screens or system operator from the methodology of TRIZ (Russian acronym translated as Theory of Inventive Problem Solving) with the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP), this paper describes a comprehensive framework for SA called SAWS (Situational Awareness WindowS). The paper also provides a case study with an application to disaster management for bio-war situation that is the most likely weapons of mass destruction (WMD) that non-state actors may use in their attempt to terrorize.

Keywords: 9 windows, Crisis Management, AHP, TRIZ, Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD), Bio War

1. Introduction

How efficiently any crisis or disaster is handled depends upon the decision-making capabilities and resources available. At the organizational level there is a need to have a strategic situation awareness framework for decision making. A crisis and disaster management framework as described in [Bhushan and Rai, 2004] defines three stages of disaster management namely – crisis avoidance, crisis management and disaster management. Various factors impacting these three stages in general are also described and a framework using Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) is also described. This paper combines the AHP framework for disaster management with the concept of nine windows or system operator from the theory of inventive problem solving (Russian problem solving methodology TRIZ) to describe a new strategic situational awareness framework named Situational Awareness Windows (SAWS). This extended abstract describes the key components of the framework applied to the context of bio-terrorism disasters.

2. System Operator from TRIZ

The theory of inventive problem solving (TRIZ) is a problem solving methodology developed on the basis of analysis of thousands of patents. (See and A concept in TRIZ called nine windows or system operator is a simple means of thinking in TIME and SPACE. The basic principle of operation divides ‘the world’ into nine segments. In SAWS we map the central window of the 9 windows to crisis avoidance on the time axis and “system” – which in the case study on bioterrorism below is the nation or country. (See for more information on nine windows).

3. Bio-Terrorism Disasters

The gravest threat the world is facing today is the probability of low intensity conflicts being suddenly transformed into a high intensity conflict through possession, threat of usage and actual use of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) by actors (state and non-state actors) that are resorting to low intensity conflicts against nation states. The most dangerous and most likely way a covert actor will resort of an act of war or terrorism is by possessing, threatening to use and actual usage of Biological weapons - although chemical and nuclear weapons cannot be ignored. Use of biological agents to create mass casualties against a nation state this will have a dramatic impact. Covert actor’s decision to use biological weapons has sound logic as it is relatively easy to remain covert with bio weapons. Further, one needs small quantities as the living organisms used as bio weapons for example, multiple themselves, are relatively cheap and easy to produce, very difficult to detect and potentially available. Further, biological agents do not have to be pure to create casualties - the very fact of usage has a massive psychological impact.

4. Situation Awareness Windows Framework for managing Bio-terrorism disasters

As per the system operator or nine windows we divide the space dimension into Super-system as the world at large, System as the country or nation subjected to bio-attack and sub-system as the specific city or cities in the nation state that are likely to be attacked. The framework asks the experts for various factors that will impact the nine windows of SAWS and then rank order them using the well-established methodology of AHP. Figure below describes the output of the SAWS when all factors in nine windows are rank ordered using AHP.


Bhushan, N., & Rai, K (2004). Strategic Decision Making – Applying the Analytic Hierarchy Process, Springer, UK.


Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Disruptive Vs Incremental Innovation

In a recent debate going on at Economist
the topic is

which is better - Incremental Innovation - The Japanese Model
OR Disruptive Innovation - The "Western" Model

I posted my views as

Dear Sir,
The natural way a system changes is by evolution based on adapting to the change. However, it is clear the best way to adapt to change in the changing environment is to be the creator of change that one desires. As M.K. Gandhi said, "you being the change that you want to see in the world" - according to me there is no other better definition of Innovation than this. Best model for innovation is neither Japanese nor Western (read American). Here is the model - 1. define the key functions that the system need to deliver 2. define the IDEAL system delivering that function(s) - no cost, no resources and least complex structure and no harm to environment yet the key functions are delivered 3. start looking at options of making the ideal system - since it is ideal system it will not be achievable - look at the various ways to achieve as close to ideal system as possible 4. explore all paths in a set based manner - where you pursue sets of alternatives simultaneously as for example Toyota does 5. continue by Elimination of the weakest - not choose the survival of the fittest 6. Some paths will reach to the ideal system much sooner.

So in my opinion - this is the model Create an Ideal system (which may be disruptive) - but achieve it through multiple explorations simultaneously as you do not know which path connects with which future.

The above combines two very potent methods - one is the Russian TRIZ (theory of inventive problem solving) and other from lean product development called Set Based Concurrent Engineering. We call these along with systems thinking as Lean Inventive Systems Thinking (LIST)

It is integrative - achieve disruption through simultaneous evolution

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Patent Strategy for Indian Companies in the environment of MNC threats

Recently we carried out two interesting studies (purely technical studies)

1. Patent Infringement study
2. Patent Invalidation study

Scenario: - An MNC has a patent that expired in 2010 in multiple countries but it was not filed in India. Around half-life period the MNC filed another patent which was a slight extension of the base patent - but this time through PCT route they filed in India as well. The new patent was granted - they cited the base patent as prior art and created some mumbo-jumbo the way people who draft these applications know so that the new application looks like an invention over prior art.

The patent was granted in India as well.

No one opposed/ no one knew in India as they "interested parties" in India are relatively small firms (will come under SMEs).

The MNC sent the letter to one of the big SME's saying their product infringes the patent - hence they should stop production and sales.

The Indian company really was not aware of the patent and what actions to take.

Solution: After months of struggle, they found us. We suggested that

(a) Let us look at the extent of infringement
(b) let us look at the validity of the patent

In a week of study, we were able to prove that on technical grounds

Patent is not valid (purely on Technical grounds)

(a) Insufficient disclosure of how to exercise the invention
(b) Prior art - the old expired patent was the main patent - and the extension was some sort of small extension
(c) Prior use - there was a product existing in the market since 1980s which clearly shows that invention described in the patent is not Novel.

Key lessons

(a) Maintain a continuous patent watch in your industry
(b) As you see a patent for which you have a prior art or prior use - immediately raise a pre-grant opposition in Indian Patent office (this is much less costly)
(c) If someone threatens with a patent - please do the following

1. verify the extent of infringement -
many times infringement may be very small or negligible
2. Check the validity of patent -
given the pace of patent apps and lack of sufficient availability of manpower in patent offices - many patents are granted with very low level of assessment - 30-40% of patents will be invalid on various grounds

(d) If there is an infringement and patent is valid

1. get into carrying out a Technology Alternative Studies (TAS) on the patent. To know more about TAS - please look at the LINK on Crafitti

2. Get into a discussion/negotiation with the MNC

Please understand the extent of threat that your company, your field is facing due to patent system becoming more pronounced and India becoming a Big Globally lucrative market.

Our defence is in our hands.

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