Innovation and Boston, A Natural Fit

ISPIM Innovation Conference

MassTLC, in partnership with D’Amore McKim School of Business at Northeastern University, will welcome the International Society for Professional Innovation Management (ISPIM) to Boston for the ISPIM Innovation Forum, March 26-28. 

We had a chance to chat with Iain Bitran, Executive Director of ISPIM, and Jeff Hovis, Managing Principal at Product Genesis, the local organizer of the event, about how innovation is driving different types of organizations and functional areas.

People think of innovation as product or technology focused. What other areas of innovation do you see in local companies?

​We see a lot of activity in workspace innovation. In fact, Innovation Spaces is our keynote topic on the first day of the conference.  We also see people challenged with talent, both acquisition and retention of the right talent.  This is one of our workshop topics during MassTLC IndustryJam@ ISPIM, also on the first day of the conference.​

Why is innovation throughout the entire enterprise so important?

​Innovation can increase the effectiveness of essentially every part of an enterprise.  Innovation is not just about new products and services, it is about new business models, new business processes, new fulfillment and servicing models.  All parts of the enterprise can benefit from innovation.​

Can you give some examples of companies that are successfully fostering innovation within their organizations and workforces?

​Well, we’ll hear from two of them – PTC and LogMeIn – during the Best Practices from Boston’s Best fireside chat at the conference.

Does innovation apply to the public sector as well?

Absolutely, but public sector innovation does not happen by itself: problems need to be identified, and ideas translated into projects that can be tested, implemented and shared. To do so, public sector organizations must identify the processes and structures that can support and accelerate innovation. 

What are local communities doing to drive innovation in public services and urban livability?

​The City of Boston has the Mayor’s Office for New Urban Mechanics that focuses on innovative solutions to urban livability and public services.​  For the Innovation Forum, we are engaging with the Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics ​for the Boston Wicked Challenge around autonomous vehicles in the dense urban core.

What is unique about Boston as a place for an innovation conference?

Boston consistently ranks as one of the most innovative cities in the world yet it is also very compact, making it very easy to get around to visit many of the different industry clusters in the city.

What can attendees expect to learn at the ISPIM Innovation Forum?

ISPIM’s mission is to further the field of innovation management. The forum supports this mission by creating connections between people and organizations in a local innovation community and people and organizations from around the world that otherwise might not connect. To connect means to:

  • Share practical experience, applied research insights, and real-world problems
  • Tackle common problems and jointly solve problems across industries and across boundaries
  • Create professional relationships that endure and actions that leave a legacy

Register for the ISPIM Innovation Forum here.