Why Innovators Need to Manage IP, (instead of the lawyers)
Industrial innovation is evolving towards a more open process, where external ideas are incorporated into R&D projects alongside internal work, and internal ideas are shared externally with other innovators. Whether on the inbound side or the outbound side, this more open utilization of ideas will require careful attention to the management of intellectual property. In the past, innovators left the management of IP to the lawyers, who in turn worried primarily minimizing downside risks in litigation. In this new approach, companies will manage IP strategically, looking to accelerate time to market, and to create new growth opportunities. Innovators will have to become conversant with the basic principles of IP, in order to effectively access external technologies, and in order to position internal technology for greater external use.
Henry Chesbrough is Executive Director of the Center for Open Innovation at the Haas School of Business. He teaches in the Management of Technology Program at Haas, which is a joint program with Berkeley's graduate College of Engineering. Previously, he was an assistant professor of business administration, and the Class of 1961 Fellow at the Harvard Business School. He holds a Ph.D. in Business Administration from the University of California-Berkeley, an MBA from Stanford University, and a BA from Yale University, summa cum laude.
His research focuses on managing technology and innovation. His new book, Open Innovation (Harvard Business School Press, 2003), articulates a new paradigm for organizing and managing R&D. In this new approach, companies must access external and well as internal technologies, and take them to market through internal and external paths. This book was named a "Best Business Book of 2003" by Strategy & Business magazine, and the best book on innovation in 2003 on NPR's All Things Considered. Scientific American magazine named him one of the top 50 technology and business leaders for 2003 in recognition of his research on industrial innovation. His academic work has been published in Harvard Business Review, California Management Review, Sloan Management Review, Research Policy, Industrial and Corporate Change, Research-Technology Management, Business History Review, and the Journal of Evolutionary Economics.
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