Exploiting Chaos: Innovation in the Making

Exploiting Chaos, Communities of Practice
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The MAIM Class of 2014 will be sharing their individual experiences over the course of the following weeks, which shape the six communities of practice that will be exhibited at their upcoming Degree Show, Exploiting Chaos: Innovation in the Making, at Central Saint Martins from June 18-22.

By operating at the intersection of different disciplines and practices for the past two years, the MA Innovation Management class of 2014 has learnt to recognise the productive capabilities of chaos in identifying and delivering meaningful innovation opportunities. This is a practice that we have developed both as individuals, and as a collective, through work placements, personal explorations and theoretical studies.


Our collective experiences have highlighted six communities of practice that were present throughout our journey: observation, collaboration, networking, prototyping, narration and bridging. Over the course of the following weeks and in the lead up to our degree show, Exploiting Chaos: Innovation in the Making, we will share the individual stories that make up our six communities of practice, gathering the experiences, insights and opportunities we have come across when exploiting chaos over the past two years on MAIM.


The Observers

Innovation management requires both creativity and critical thinking. Delving into one’s own thoughts like an artist might do can be a barrier to the successful implementation of ideas at the organisational level, while chasing systematic and analytical processes alone may hinder the capture of creative opportunities. The Observers first open their eyes and look at what is happening around them. They immerse themselves into the world of the individual, group, organisation and wider culture, which leads them to a deeper engagement with users and stakeholders.


The Collaborators

Collaboration has gained increased significance and effectiveness in various industries. It has been seen that people with different expertise and interests can provide diverse sources of inspiration on each other’s ideas or processes. Making sense of radical perspectives may seem chaotic and inefficient at the beginning, but, as The Collaborators have seen, the connections made from a broader pool of thought will increase the possibilities of serendipitous discoveries and creative solutions for various challenges.


The Networkers

Apple, Nike, and Google are among the companies that are often cited as machines for innovation. How and where do they get their ideas from? Although there is no one right answer to this question, it is widely accepted that the careful cultivation and utilisation of networks promotes the generation of creative and groundbreaking ideas. The Networkers introduce diverse examples of making connections through co-creation and crowdsourcing, explaining how these processes influence the empowerment of human sources to harness and bring about innovation.


The Prototypers

No one can accurately predict the future in every given scenario, and no one can know the result of an action unless they have tried it. This uncertainty or unpredictability makes many people and/or organisations hesitant about taking action and making changes. However, in todays environment, organisations that do not progress cannot maintain favourable positions in their industries. The Prototypers believe in learning by doing. If you can’t predict the future, why not try it first?


The Narrators

Effective communication is essential in every aspect of human life, be it social, political, or business related. Comprehending the context of language allows people to stay relevant to their situations and goals through efficient transfer of knowledge and intentions, across each of our own individual, organisational and national cultures. The Narrators have found that methods such as storytelling can guide the visualisation of content, triggering imagination, creativity and innovation.


The Bridgers 

Knowledge has become a critical organisational asset in today’s globally connected environment. But while there is a vast amount of information available, many companies do not know how to select and utilise knowledge in the most effective way. Unlike individual knowledge, organisational knowledge should be shared to build a common ground for understanding, which will in turn create a culture of continuous learning and development, allowing organisations to be more prepared for rapidly changing environments and to capture opportunities for innovation.


To learn more about our experiences, insights and opportunities we welcome you to our upcoming Degree Show, Exploiting Chaos: Innovation in the Making, which will be held at Central Saint Martins from 18-22 June.