I just came across an article entitled Emotional Intelligence or Math and Science: Which Is Essential to Innovation? That, in an unexpected way, confirms how deep are the viewpoints and skills convergence forces which are driving technology based societies. As a former Chair of INTA’s ADR Committee and a mediation trainer myself, I am very much aware of empathy’s important role as a mediation and communication technique. It is therefore of much interest when an educator with strong focus on innovation points to empathy’s role in the context of innovation.

Another example of the approach of studying the impact of empathy on innovation can be found at the University of Michigan at their Ross School of Business where it is stated that “(e)mpathy is the undervalued stock of innovation because people tend to leave their emotions at the door when they come to work”, or at the genovasi Designing Malaysia project within the realms of design thinking approach where it is stated that “(w)idespread empathy is about getting every single person in an organization to have a gut-level intuition for the people who buy their products and services (the folks who really matter).”

Although probably more of a coincidence than the same focus, one should note that there are still others who are also studying this interaction fro other angles, such as the Cleveland Clinic, which is devoting a Patient Experience conference to the topic of Empathy + Innovation in May of 2017.

Just as piracy and counterfeiting are converging into one under the digital pressure, so apparently do innovation and empathy and many other concepts too. The article contains a shortlist of the traits of disruptive inventors which is also of interest. As an extension of our Committee’s task, now we can ask ourselves how does empathy influence the value of our brands? I think this will be, among others, a good topic for the 2017 INTA conference which I will be co-chairing in Berlin, Germany next December under the title: Brand Authenticity: How Sustainability, Responsibility and Integrity Impact your Bottom Line.

I have come across another excellent post by Michael Spencer, entitled Most Disruptive Tech Trends of  2107,  listing all of the most likely next disruptive technologies and I leave it to yourselves to make up which convergences are enabling them and which will be enabled by those trends.

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