Trends to consider in policy-making – What to avoid

The emergence of the platform economy has created powerful non-state actors that have far-reaching influence on communities around the globe. In this new nexus of business, technology, and society, we need to rethink policy-making to blend innovation policy with foreign policy from the start. Today, I’ll offer some thoughts about ongoing developments and look for outcomes we should try to avoid.

Innovation and foreign policy

At first glance, innovation and foreign policy seem worlds apart. Researchers, entrepreneurs, and business people on one side, ambassadors, diplomats, and policy makers on the other. But they have more in common than first meets the eye. And more need to collaborate than ever before.

Where’s your innovation focus? – Part 1: Harmony

Innovation is never easy. Regardless of its purpose, you’ll always have a lot to take into account: needs and expectations, resource implications, rules and regulations, the state of the art as well as technical limitations of legacy systems. Wrestling with all these constraints can easily distract you from your ultimate goal. To help you find your innovation focus, I’ll revisit two conceptual maps I’ve discussed earlier to develop a hybrid navigation aid that combines the best of both concepts.

Embrace the seeming paradox!

Let’s face it: your problems are like spoiled brats, just too willing to misbehave. And they can easily afford to be ill-tempered, irrational, incoherent, inconsistent. However, you cannot. Not as an individual, not as a leader, not as an organisation. For you must uphold some level of coherence and consistency to maintain your credibility (and I would add: your self-esteem). How can you achieve that goal if your problems obviously don’t play fair?

Reading the map – East or West?

The Cynefin framework is a sense-making model that can serve as a map to give you some orientation in challenging situations of decision-making or problem-solving. Recently, I took a closer look at how you could read this map and why it is prudent to avoid the Southern domains. Today, I’ll investigate the main differences between the Eastern and the Western domains and how those will affect your chances of success.