GSS cIRcle Open Scholar Award (UBCV Non-Thesis Graduate Work)

Design Thinking, Innovation and Business Incubators: A Literature Review 2012

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Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  –	
  August	
  2012	
   Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators:	
  	
   A	
  Literature	
  Review	
  	
   	
   Prepared	
  by:	
   Angele	
  Beausoleil,	
  ISGP	
  MA	
  Student	
   	
   Abstract:	
  The	
  importance	
  of	
  innovation	
  in	
  corporate	
  competitiveness	
  and	
  global	
  economic	
  growth	
  has	
   made	
  it	
  a	
  central	
  topic	
  of	
  research	
  over	
  the	
  past	
  decade	
  with	
  a	
  growing	
  recognition	
  that	
  design	
   thinking,	
  as	
  the	
  new	
  approach	
  to	
  innovation,	
  plays	
  a	
  critical	
  role.	
  Despite	
  case	
  studies	
  of	
  corporate	
   enterprise	
  success,	
  little	
  is	
  known	
  on	
  how	
  business	
  incubators,	
  the	
  organizations	
  who	
  nurture	
  and	
   launch	
  small	
  and	
  medium-­‐sized	
  enterprises	
  (SMEs),	
  undertake	
  design	
  thinking	
  and	
  innovative	
  activities.	
   This	
  paper	
  reviews	
  available	
  literature	
  and	
  examines	
  the	
  relationship	
  between	
  design	
  thinking,	
   innovation	
  and	
  business	
  incubation	
  and	
  presents	
  varying	
  perspectives	
  of	
  design-­‐led	
  innovation	
  in	
   commercial	
  for-­‐profit	
  incubators.	
  The	
  results	
  of	
  this	
  multidisciplinary	
  survey	
  illustrate	
  how	
  the	
   integration	
  of	
  design	
  thinking	
  and	
  innovative	
  approaches	
  are	
  redefining	
  the	
  next	
  generation	
  of	
  business	
   incubators	
  and	
  providing	
  greater	
  socio-­‐economic	
  value.	
  It	
  concludes	
  with	
  a	
  discussion	
  of	
  gaps	
  and	
   weaknesses	
  in	
  the	
  literature	
  and	
  some	
  requirements	
  for	
  future	
  research	
  in	
  this	
  field.	
  The	
  purpose	
  of	
  this	
   research	
  is	
  to	
  broaden	
  the	
  understanding	
  of	
  the	
  effects	
  of	
  design	
  thinking	
  and	
  innovation	
  in	
  the	
  context	
   of	
  business	
  incubator	
  and	
  next	
  generation	
  business	
  models.	
   	
   Keywords:	
  Design	
  Thinking,	
  Business	
  Incubator,	
  Design-­‐led	
  Innovation,	
  Business	
  Incubation	
  	
   	
   Introduction:	
   Although	
  a	
  relatively	
  recent	
  concept,	
  there	
  is	
  a	
  growing	
  body	
  of	
  research	
  that	
  supports	
  building	
  design	
   thinking	
  capacity	
  and	
  understanding	
  within	
  corporations	
  (Brown,	
  2009;	
  Kelley,	
  2009)	
  and	
  small	
   medium	
  sized	
  enterprises	
  (SMEs)	
  (Kahli	
  et	
  al,	
  2010;	
  Martin,	
  2009).	
  The	
  adoption	
  of	
  design	
  thinking	
  by	
   global	
  organizations	
  such	
  as	
  Apple,	
  P&G,	
  Dyson,	
  Nintendo	
  and	
  Burberry	
  proves	
  innovation	
  through	
   good	
  design	
  is	
  good	
  for	
  business.	
  For	
  entrepreneurs	
  and	
  their	
  SMEs,	
  design	
  thinking	
  can	
  be	
  invaluable	
   tool	
  to	
  clearly	
  define	
  which	
  products	
  and	
  services	
  they	
  intend	
  to	
  offer,	
  where	
  they	
  are	
  positioned	
  in	
   the	
  marketplace,	
  and	
  what	
  their	
  unique	
  value	
  propositions	
  are	
  (van	
  Zyl,	
  2008).	
   	
   Entrepreneurs	
  take	
  an	
  intangible	
  business	
  idea	
  and	
  make	
  it	
  concrete.	
  They	
  are	
  involved	
  in	
  a	
   synthesizing	
  process	
  that	
  includes	
  the	
  concurrent	
  creation	
  of	
  new	
  services	
  or	
  products	
  with	
  the	
   construction	
  of	
  their	
  business	
  (van	
  Zyl,	
  2008).	
  Business	
  incubation	
  is	
  a	
  dynamic	
  process	
  that	
  affords	
   entrepreneurs	
  to	
  develop	
  their	
  new	
  venture	
  and	
  is	
  provided	
  by	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  (BIs)	
  who	
  nurtures	
   the	
  entrepreneurs	
  and	
  their	
  start-­‐up	
  firms	
  by	
  helping	
  them	
  get	
  the	
  resources,	
  services,	
  and	
  assistance	
   they	
  need	
  or	
  want	
  (Lyons,	
  2000).	
  Business	
  incubation	
  is	
  considered	
  the	
  link	
  between	
  innovation	
  and	
   entrepreneurship	
  (Khalil	
  et	
  al,	
  2010)	
  and	
  is	
  also	
  related	
  to	
  design	
  thinking,	
  which	
  involves	
  the	
  design	
  of	
   products	
  and	
  services,	
  the	
  management	
  of	
  design	
  production	
  and	
  the	
  design	
  of	
  the	
  organization.	
  The	
   entrepreneur	
  may	
  have	
  an	
  idea,	
  but	
  without	
  design	
  thinking,	
  it	
  may	
  never	
  be	
  synthesized	
  (van	
  Zyl,	
   2008)	
  and	
  without	
  innovation,	
  it	
  may	
  never	
  by	
  successfully	
  commercialized	
  (Khalil	
  et	
  al,	
  2008).	
   	
   This	
  paper	
  explores	
  the	
  connection	
  between	
  design	
  thinking,	
  innovation	
  and	
  business	
  incubation.	
  It	
   aims	
  to	
  broaden	
  the	
  understanding	
  of	
  the	
  effects	
  of	
  design	
  thinking	
  and	
  innovation	
  in	
  the	
  context	
  of	
   Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  –	
  August	
  2012	
   commercial	
  business	
  incubation	
  models	
  and	
  systems.	
  This	
  multidisciplinary	
  review	
  is	
  presented	
  in	
  four	
   sections:	
  design	
  thinking,	
  innovation	
  and	
  business	
  incubation;	
  a	
  background	
  on	
  business	
  incubators	
  as	
   evolving	
  organizations	
  and	
  economic	
  development	
  tools;	
  design-­‐driven	
  innovation	
  as	
  illustrated	
  by	
   theoretical	
  and	
  practical	
  application	
  studies;	
  and	
  a	
  discussion	
  on	
  the	
  role	
  of	
  design-­‐thinking	
  in	
  the	
  next	
   generation	
  of	
  incubator	
  models.	
   	
   1.	
  Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators	
   	
   In	
  2005,	
  the	
  Hasso-­‐Plattner-­‐Institute	
  of	
  Design	
  at	
  Stanford	
  University	
  in	
  California	
  began	
  to	
  teach	
   design	
  thinking	
  to	
  engineering	
  students	
  with	
  a	
  conviction	
  that	
  engineers	
  and	
  scientists	
  could	
  learn	
  to	
   become	
  innovators.	
  Meinel	
  and	
  Leifer	
  (2010)	
  support	
  Plattner’s	
  vision,	
  and	
  believe great	
  innovators	
   and	
  leaders	
  need	
  to	
  be	
  great	
  design	
  thinkers.	
  Through	
  their	
  research	
  they	
  have	
  concluded	
  high	
  impact	
   teams	
  work	
  at	
  the	
  intersection	
  of	
  technology,	
  business,	
  and	
  human	
  values	
  and	
  through	
  collaborative	
   communities	
  breakthrough	
  ideas,	
  products	
  and	
  companies	
  are	
  created.	
  They	
  believe	
  design	
  thinking	
  is	
   a	
  catalyst	
  for	
  innovation	
  and	
  for	
  bringing	
  new	
  things	
  into	
  the	
  world	
  (Meinel,	
  Leifer	
  and	
  Plattner,	
  2011).	
   	
   They	
  are	
  joined	
  by	
  a	
  growing	
  number	
  of	
  scholars	
  and	
  practitioners	
  who	
  support	
  a	
  direct	
  correlation	
   between	
  design	
  thinking	
  and	
  innovation.	
  Tim	
  Brown	
  (2009)	
  defines	
  design	
  thinking	
  “as	
  a	
  methodology	
   for	
  innovation	
  and	
  enablement”	
  and	
  “the	
  open-­‐minded,	
  no-­‐holds-­‐barred	
  approach	
  that	
  designers	
  bring	
   to	
  their	
  work,	
  rather	
  than	
  the	
  narrow,	
  technical	
  view	
  of	
  innovation	
  traditionally	
  taught	
  at	
  many	
   business	
  and	
  engineering	
  schools.	
  Thomas	
  Lockwood	
  (2010)	
  adds	
  “Design	
  thinking	
  is	
  primarily	
  an	
   innovation	
  process	
  that	
  involves	
  discovering	
  unmet	
  needs	
  and	
  opportunities	
  to	
  create	
  new	
  solutions”.	
   Roger	
  Martin	
  (2009)	
  through	
  case	
  study	
  research	
  provides	
  further	
  evidence	
  that	
  design	
  thinking	
  is	
  the	
   interplay	
  between	
  analytical	
  mastery	
  and	
  intuitive	
  originality,	
  and	
  that	
  the	
  firms	
  that	
  master	
  this	
   balancing	
  act	
  will	
  be	
  the	
  most	
  innovative	
  and	
  successful	
  for	
  years	
  to	
  come.”	
   	
   As	
  it	
  relates	
  to	
  business	
  incubation,	
  design	
  thinking	
  is	
  defined	
  as	
  the	
  collection	
  of	
  methods	
  that	
  are	
   common	
  in	
  engineering,	
  ethnologic	
  and	
  anthropologic	
  research,	
  industrial	
  design	
  and	
  business	
   economics.	
  It	
  is	
  distinguished	
  by	
  the	
  integration	
  of	
  methods,	
  a	
  focus	
  on	
  a	
  human-­‐centered	
  innovation	
   process	
  and	
  the	
  formation	
  of	
  multidisciplinary	
  teams	
  (Açar	
  and	
  Rother,	
  2011).	
  It	
  is	
  also	
  linked	
  to	
   innovation,	
  defined	
  as	
  the	
  pursuit	
  of	
  an	
  individual’s	
  seed	
  idea,	
  nurturing	
  by	
  a	
  team	
  and	
  gradually	
   involving	
  an	
  entire	
  organization	
  (Tang,	
  1996).	
  Design	
  thinking	
  is	
  related	
  to	
  the	
  theory	
  of	
  innovation,	
   founded	
  on	
  Schumpeter’s	
  (1942)	
  “creative	
  destruction”	
  concept,	
  that	
  innovation	
  is	
  the	
  process	
  of	
   revolutionizing	
  the	
  economic	
  structure	
  from	
  within	
  a	
  firm	
  through	
  the	
  deliberate	
  destruction	
  of	
  an	
  old	
   one	
  and	
  explicit	
  creation	
  of	
  a	
  new	
  one	
  (Gero,	
  2011).	
   	
   Studies	
  bridging	
  design	
  thinking	
  and	
  innovation	
  to	
  business	
  incubators	
  suggest	
  two	
  models	
  of	
   operation.	
  Some	
  business	
  incubators	
  operate	
  within	
  a	
  closed	
  innovation	
  model	
  where	
  they	
  generate	
   their	
  own	
  ideas,	
  and	
  then	
  develop,	
  build,	
  market,	
  distribute	
  and	
  support	
  them	
  on	
  their	
  own.	
  Others,	
   operate	
  an	
  open	
  innovation	
  model	
  (Chesbrough	
  et	
  al.	
  2006).	
  where	
  the	
  research	
  paradigm	
  assumes	
   the	
  new	
  ventures	
  can	
  and	
  should	
  use	
  external	
  ideas	
  as	
  well	
  as	
  internal	
  ideas,	
  and	
  explore	
  internal	
  and	
   external	
  paths	
  to	
  market,	
  as	
  the	
  firms	
  look	
  to	
  advance	
  their	
  technology,	
  product	
  or	
  service	
  (Kaivo-­‐oja,	
   2011).	
  Technology	
  acquisition	
  and	
  technology	
  exploitation	
  are	
  key	
  elements	
  of	
  open	
  innovation	
   thinking	
  (Lichtenthaler	
  2008).	
  Technology	
  exploitation	
  refers	
  to	
  purposeful	
  outflow	
  of	
  knowledge	
   Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  –	
  August	
  2012	
   versus	
  technology	
  exploration,	
  which	
  refers	
  to	
  the	
  acquisition	
  new	
  knowledge	
  and	
  technologies	
  from	
   the	
  outside.	
  “Open”	
  is	
  considered	
  the	
  new	
  paradigm	
  (Chesbrough,	
  2003)	
  in	
  innovation,	
  which	
  supports	
   the	
  fact	
  that	
  valuable	
  ideas	
  can	
  come	
  even	
  from	
  inside	
  as	
  outside	
  the	
  company	
  or	
  corporation	
  (Kaivo-­‐ oja,	
  2011)	
   	
   Studies	
  explicitly	
  connecting	
  design	
  thinking,	
  innovation	
  and	
  business	
  incubation	
  appear	
  absent	
  in	
  both	
   scholarly	
  and	
  industry	
  databases.	
  Green’s	
  (2007)	
  article	
  implicitly	
  suggests	
  a	
  correlation	
  between	
   design	
  thinking,	
  innovation	
  and	
  business	
  incubation	
  through	
  his	
  Innovation	
  Diffusion	
  Opportunity	
  (IDO)	
   model,	
  which	
  appears	
  to	
  as	
  an	
  alternative	
  label	
  for	
  design	
  thinking.	
  Green	
  (2007)	
  suggests	
  IDO	
  as	
  an	
   event	
  or	
  interaction	
  during	
  which	
  new	
  knowledge,	
  skills,	
  tools,	
  ideas,	
  and	
  other	
  forms	
  of	
  technology	
   are	
  presented	
  by	
  the	
  business	
  incubation	
  network	
  and	
  implemented/incorporated	
  into	
  the	
  business	
   practice	
  to	
  be	
  retained	
  for	
  future	
  consideration	
  or	
  to	
  be	
  converted	
  into	
  a	
  start-­‐up	
  company	
  (Green	
   2007).	
   	
   Although	
  defined	
  for	
  this	
  paper,	
  the	
  term	
  design	
  thinking	
  appears	
  absent	
  from	
  the	
  business	
  vocabulary	
   of	
  most	
  incubator	
  managers,	
  entrepreneurs	
  and	
  SMEs.	
  Therefore,	
  this	
  literature	
  review	
  attempts	
  to	
   provide	
  the	
  first	
  dialogue	
  between	
  academia	
  and	
  industry	
  on	
  design	
  thinking,	
  as	
  the	
  process	
  of	
   innovation,	
  of	
  turning	
  new	
  ideas	
  into	
  practical	
  products,	
  environments	
  and	
  services	
  around	
  the	
   changing	
  needs	
  of	
  users	
  (Martin,	
  2009;	
  Kelley,	
  2009,	
  Meinel	
  et	
  al,	
  2010),	
  and	
  its	
  relationship	
  with	
   business	
  incubators.	
   	
   2.	
  Background	
  on	
  Business	
  Incubators	
   	
   Incubators	
  have	
  been	
  around	
  since	
  the	
  1950s,	
  but	
  the	
  Internet	
  spawned	
  a	
  new	
  breed	
  of	
  business	
   incubators	
  (BIs)	
  focused	
  on	
  web	
  technologies,	
  information	
  and	
  communication	
  technologies	
  (ICT)	
  and	
   services.	
  The	
  market	
  changes	
  from	
  the	
  past	
  20	
  yrs	
  have	
  revived	
  and	
  reshaped	
  the	
  concept	
  of	
   incubation,	
  leading	
  to	
  the	
  growth	
  of	
  private	
  incubators	
  as	
  profit-­‐oriented	
  institutions	
  who	
  provide	
   funding,	
  facilities,	
  expertise	
  and	
  networks.	
  Interest	
  in	
  private	
  for-­‐profit	
  incubators	
  continues	
  to	
   increase	
  stemming	
  from	
  the	
  importance	
  attached	
  to	
  high-­‐tech	
  companies	
  and	
  more	
  generally,	
  to	
  the	
   new	
  knowledge-­‐based	
  economy	
  (Bollingtoft	
  and	
  Ulhoi,	
  2005).	
   	
   According	
  to	
  National	
  Business	
  Incubation	
  Association	
  (NBIA),	
  it	
  is	
  estimated	
  that	
  over	
  7,000	
  business	
   incubators	
  operate	
  worldwide.	
  In	
  North	
  America	
  there	
  is	
  approx.	
  1,400	
  incubators,	
  the	
  majority	
  being	
   technology-­‐focused	
  with	
  only	
  one	
  quarter	
  being	
  private	
  and	
  for-­‐profit	
  incubators.	
  The	
  business	
   incubator	
  (BI)	
  has	
  evolved	
  over	
  the	
  years	
  to	
  meet	
  a	
  variety	
  of	
  needs,	
  from	
  fostering	
  commercialization	
   of	
  university	
  technologies	
  to	
  increasing	
  employment	
  in	
  economically	
  distressed	
  communities	
  to	
  serving	
   as	
  an	
  investment	
  vehicle	
  (NBIA,	
  2012).	
   	
   Business	
  Incubators	
  are	
  increasingly	
  heralded	
  as	
  critical	
  economic	
  development	
  tools	
  for	
  job	
  creation	
   (Hackett	
  et	
  al,	
  2004)	
  and	
  through	
  successful	
  operation,	
  commercialize	
  new	
  technologies	
  (products	
  and	
   services),	
  deliver	
  more	
  startups	
  with	
  fewer	
  business	
  failures	
  and	
  generate	
  regional	
  economic	
  impact	
   (Hackett	
  et	
  al,	
  2004).	
  In	
  addition	
  to	
  offering	
  financial	
  markets	
  a	
  pool	
  of	
  high-­‐growth	
  potential	
   investment	
  and	
  lending	
  prospects	
  at	
  reduced	
  risk,	
  incubators	
  can	
  also	
  offer	
  academic	
  institutions	
  a	
   vehicle	
  to	
  commercialize	
  research	
  and/or	
  assist	
  graduates	
  with	
  setting	
  new	
  business	
  ventures	
  and	
   Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  –	
  August	
  2012	
   provide	
  corporations	
  access	
  to	
  innovative	
  ideas	
  to	
  strengthen	
  their	
  supply	
  chain,	
  delivery	
  mechanisms	
   or	
  operations	
  (Khahli	
  and	
  Olasfen,	
  2010).	
   	
   The	
  debates	
  in	
  the	
  value	
  of	
  incubators	
  research	
  are	
  numerous	
  (Bollingtoft	
  et	
  al,	
  2005;	
  Chesbrough,	
   2002:2003;	
  Khali	
  et	
  al,	
  2010;	
  Marshall,	
  2010),	
  with	
  some	
  authors	
  (Hackett	
  et	
  al,	
  2004;	
  Khali	
  et	
  al,	
  2010;	
   NBIA,	
  2012)	
  agreeing	
  to	
  the	
  need	
  for	
  systems	
  and	
  programs	
  to	
  help	
  new	
  ventures	
  navigate	
  the	
   complex	
  business	
  climate,	
  and	
  others	
  (Peters	
  et	
  al,	
  2009)	
  suggesting	
  they	
  are	
  too	
  sheltered	
  and	
  are	
  a	
   flawed	
  model	
  because	
  they	
  take	
  the	
  initiative	
  away	
  from	
  the	
  start-­‐up	
  team.	
  At	
  the	
  same	
  time,	
  a	
  recent	
   and	
  growing	
  body	
  of	
  research	
  (Lockwood,	
  2010)	
  suggests	
  ventures	
  of	
  the	
  future	
  will	
  be	
  those	
  who	
  can	
   innovate	
  and	
  create	
  meaningful	
  value	
  for	
  their	
  shareholders	
  and	
  customers,	
  and	
  those	
  who	
  best	
  use	
   the	
  principles	
  and	
  methods	
  of	
  design	
  thinking.	
   	
   BI	
  research	
  suggests	
  the	
  majority	
  are	
  technology-­‐oriented	
  and	
  are	
  built	
  from	
  a	
  linear	
  model	
  of	
   innovation	
  (Dunphy,	
  et	
  al,	
  1996)	
  where	
  the	
  idea	
  for	
  new	
  technologies	
  stem	
  from	
  scientific	
  research	
  at	
   local	
  university,	
  which	
  is	
  then	
  transferred	
  to	
  a	
  commercialization	
  firm	
  or	
  division,	
  either	
  internally	
  as	
  a	
   public	
  or	
  corporate	
  incubator	
  or	
  externally	
  to	
  a	
  private	
  incubator.	
  The	
  conventional	
  innovation	
  theory	
   is	
  based	
  on	
  the	
  idea	
  of	
  a	
  linear	
  progression	
  model	
  (Dunphy,	
  et	
  al,	
  1996),	
  from	
  research	
  to	
   development,	
  with	
  the	
  innovation	
  process	
  acting	
  as	
  a	
  funnel	
  (Gardien,	
  2006).	
  The	
  many	
  different	
  and	
   disparate	
  initial	
  ideas	
  are	
  gradually	
  whittled	
  down	
  –	
  either	
  inside	
  or	
  outside	
  (Chesbrough,	
  2003)	
  the	
   company	
  –	
  until	
  a	
  small	
  number	
  of	
  the	
  most	
  feasible	
  concepts	
  are	
  left.	
  These	
  are	
  then	
  developed	
  and	
   matched	
  with	
  the	
  profitable	
  business	
  case	
  model	
  (Gardien,	
  2006).	
   	
   Private	
  or	
  for-­‐profit	
  incubators	
  are	
  commonly	
  segmented	
  into	
  Corporate	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  (CBIs)	
   and	
  Independent	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  (IBIs).	
  CPIs	
  are	
  owned	
  and	
  managed	
  by	
  large	
  companies	
  with	
  the	
   aim	
  of	
  supporting	
  the	
  emergence	
  of	
  new	
  independent	
  business	
  (aka	
  corporate	
  spin-­‐offs)	
  and	
  usually	
   originate	
  from	
  in-­‐house	
  research	
  project	
  spill-­‐overs.	
  IBIs	
  are	
  set	
  up	
  by	
  single	
  individuals	
  or	
  by	
  groups	
  of	
   individuals	
  who	
  help	
  entrepreneurs	
  create	
  and	
  grow	
  their	
  business	
  by	
  providing	
  investment	
  funding	
   and	
  access	
  to	
  resources	
  including	
  strategic	
  partners	
  networks.	
  A	
  subset	
  of	
  private	
  IBIs	
  are	
  described	
  as	
   networked	
  incubators	
  (Bollingtoft	
  et	
  al,	
  2005),	
  those	
  based	
  on	
  the	
  value	
  of	
  collaboration	
  and	
  social	
   capital	
  of	
  either	
  individual	
  and/or	
  collective	
  social	
  networks,	
  connections	
  and	
  structures	
  that	
  help	
  the	
   entrepreneur	
  access	
  the	
  knowledge	
  and	
  strategic	
  relationships	
  they	
  need	
  to	
  realize	
  their	
  vision	
   (Bollingtoft	
  et	
  al,	
  2005).	
   	
   Recent	
  evidence-­‐based	
  research	
  shows	
  a	
  positive	
  relationship	
  between	
  CBI	
  model	
  success	
  and	
  design	
   thinking.	
  Brown,	
  Kelley,	
  Martin	
  et	
  al	
  have	
  demonstrated	
  the	
  success	
  of	
  P&G’s	
  Design	
  Thinking	
  and	
  Clay	
   Street	
  Project,	
  GE’s	
  Chief	
  Design	
  Officer	
  designation,	
  Phillips	
  Design	
  Research	
  Projects,	
  Intuit’s	
  Design	
   for	
  Delight	
  approach,	
  and	
  SAP’s	
  design	
  thinking	
  lab.	
  CBIs	
  are	
  modeled	
  to	
  provide	
  the	
  “intrapreneur”,	
  a	
   start-­‐up	
  environment	
  while	
  working	
  within	
  a	
  Fortune	
  50	
  company.	
  Design-­‐thinking	
  oriented	
  incubators	
   such	
  as	
  these	
  remove	
  people	
  from	
  their	
  day	
  jobs	
  and	
  out	
  of	
  their	
  comfort	
  zone	
  and	
  enables	
  they	
  end	
   up	
  thinking	
  about	
  entrepreneurial	
  solutions	
  that	
  might	
  not	
  have	
  ever	
  crossed	
  their	
  minds	
  before	
   (Brown,	
  Kelley,	
  Martin	
  et	
  al).	
  Unfortunately,	
  private	
  and	
  public	
  incubators	
  do	
  not	
  share	
  CBIs	
  success,	
   suggesting	
  the	
  lack	
  of	
  understanding	
  and	
  appreciation	
  for	
  design	
  thinking.	
  It	
  is	
  expected	
  that	
  upon	
   completion	
  of	
  an	
  incubator	
  program,	
  the	
  new	
  firm	
  has	
  developed	
  the	
  skills	
  to	
  grow,	
  create	
  jobs	
  and	
   survive.	
  Industry	
  research	
  (Jen,	
  2002;	
  Kyfinn	
  et	
  al,	
  2009;	
  Marshall,	
  2010)	
  shows	
  a	
  significant	
  percentage	
   Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  –	
  August	
  2012	
   of	
  incubator	
  graduates	
  fail	
  to	
  survive,	
  attributing	
  the	
  failures	
  to	
  the	
  incubator’s	
  lack	
  of	
  providing	
  quality	
   services	
  and	
  low	
  competency	
  level	
  of	
  resources	
  (i.e.	
  advisors,	
  capital	
  and	
  valuable	
  networks.).	
  An	
   article	
  from	
  Taiwan	
  stated	
  the	
  Taiwanese	
  government	
  was	
  forced	
  to	
  revamp	
  their	
  incubators,	
  as	
  they	
   were	
  negatively	
  perceived	
  as	
  “landlords	
  instead	
  of	
  father	
  figures	
  to	
  start-­‐ups”	
  (Jen,	
  2002).	
   	
   A	
  study	
  exploring	
  how	
  technology-­‐driven	
  startups	
  can	
  benefit	
  by	
  the	
  adoption	
  of	
  design	
  thinking	
  and	
   gain	
  a	
  strategic	
  competitive	
  advantage	
  (Açar	
  and	
  Rother,	
  2011),	
  supports	
  design	
  thinking	
  methods,	
   such	
  as	
  user	
  research	
  practice	
  results	
  in	
  more	
  a	
  desirable	
  product	
  with	
  a	
  reduced	
  need	
  for	
  marketing	
   efforts.	
  The	
  study	
  infers	
  that	
  design	
  thinking	
  introduces	
  more	
  objectivity	
  to	
  new	
  technology	
  design	
  and	
   limits	
  the	
  natural	
  tendency	
  for	
  a	
  firm	
  to	
  “over	
  engineer”(Açar	
  and	
  Rother,	
  2011).	
  	
   	
   Meinel	
  and	
  Leifer	
  (2010)	
  reminds	
  us	
  of	
  a	
  global	
  truth	
  that	
  applies	
  to	
  business	
  incubators:	
  the	
  fact	
  that	
   every	
  physical,	
  technological	
  or	
  digital	
  product	
  delivers	
  a	
  service	
  and	
  that	
  every	
  service	
  is	
  manifested	
   through	
  products;	
  and	
  that	
  without	
  an	
  insightful	
  enterprise	
  strategy,	
  it	
  matters	
  little	
  if	
  the	
  products	
  or	
   services	
  is	
  unable	
  to	
  find	
  its	
  market.	
  Based	
  on	
  this	
  truth,	
  they	
  provide	
  four	
  rules	
  of	
  design	
  thinking	
  for	
   business	
  incubation:	
  the	
  Human	
  rule	
  –	
  that	
  all	
  design	
  activity	
  is	
  ultimately	
  social	
  in	
  nature	
  and	
  satisfies	
   human	
  needs;	
  the	
  Ambiguity	
  rule	
  –	
  that	
  design	
  thinking	
  must	
  preserve	
  ambiguity	
  to	
  enable	
  chance	
   discoveries	
  while	
  embracing	
  failure;	
  the	
  Re-­‐design	
  rule	
  –	
  that	
  all	
  design	
  is	
  re-­‐design	
  in	
  that	
  we	
  take	
   from	
  the	
  past	
  what	
  we	
  need	
  for	
  the	
  future	
  (social	
  and	
  technological	
  experiences;	
  and	
  the	
  Tangibility	
   Rule	
  –	
  that	
  is	
  about	
  always	
  making	
  ideas	
  tangible	
  to	
  facilitate	
  communication	
  through	
  prototyping	
   activities	
  (Meinel	
  and	
  Leifer,	
  2010).	
   	
   Business	
  incubators	
  have	
  a	
  critical	
  role	
  in	
  the	
  facilitation	
  and	
  creation	
  of	
  a	
  “new	
  venture”	
  ecosystem,	
   by	
  encouraging	
  risk-­‐oriented	
  entrepreneurs	
  to	
  bring	
  new	
  ideas	
  to	
  the	
  market	
  and	
  turn	
  the	
  potential	
  of	
   their	
  idea	
  and	
  ambition	
  into	
  real	
  social	
  and	
  economic	
  value	
  (Khalil	
  and	
  Olasfen,	
  2010).	
  Scholars	
  and	
   practitioners	
  (Brown,	
  2009;	
  Martin,	
  2009;	
  Lockwood,	
  2010)	
  suggest	
  the	
  ventures/firms	
  of	
  the	
  future	
   will	
  be	
  those	
  who	
  can	
  innovate	
  and	
  create	
  meaningful	
  value	
  for	
  their	
  shareholders	
  and	
  customers,	
   particularly	
  those	
  who	
  best	
  use	
  the	
  principles	
  and	
  methods	
  of	
  design	
  thinking.	
  	
   	
   3.	
  Design-­‐driven	
  innovation	
  and	
  business	
  incubation	
  	
   	
   Design-­‐driven	
  innovation	
  is	
  based	
  on	
  the	
  idea	
  that	
  each	
  product	
  holds	
  a	
  particular	
  meaning	
  for	
   consumers.	
  For	
  example,	
  Swatch	
  transformed	
  the	
  meaning	
  of	
  watches	
  as	
  time	
  instruments	
  into	
   fashion	
  accessories	
  while	
  the	
  Nindendo	
  Wii	
  redefined	
  the	
  meaning	
  of	
  playing	
  with	
  a	
  game	
  console	
  as	
  a	
   social	
  and	
  active	
  experience.	
  Innovative	
  companies	
  like	
  Swatch,	
  Nintendo	
  and	
  Apple	
  step	
  back	
  from	
   users	
  and	
  take	
  a	
  broader	
  perspective	
  (Verganti	
  2010).	
  They	
  explore	
  how	
  the	
  context	
  in	
  which	
  people	
   buy	
  things	
  is	
  changing	
  and	
  how	
  technologies,	
  products,	
  and	
  services	
  are	
  shaping	
  that	
  context,	
   highlighting	
  that	
  social-­‐cultural	
  observation	
  is	
  key.	
  Incubators	
  and	
  their	
  incubating	
  new	
  businesses	
  can	
   realize	
  successful	
  radical	
  innovations	
  of	
  meanings	
  by	
  practicing	
  the	
  art	
  of	
  listening,	
  interpreting,	
  and	
   addressing	
  (Verganti	
  2010).	
   	
   Today,	
  most	
  business	
  incubators	
  continue	
  to	
  provide	
  logistical	
  and	
  financial	
  support	
  to	
  the	
   entrepreneur,	
  yet	
  lack	
  the	
  leadership	
  and	
  influence	
  of	
  design	
  thinkers	
  -­‐-­‐	
  those	
  able	
  to	
  look	
  at	
  the	
  big	
   picture	
  while	
  simultaneously	
  see	
  the	
  details.	
  Downton	
  (2003)	
  describes	
  the	
  design	
  thinker	
  as	
  one	
  who	
   Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  –	
  August	
  2012	
   employs	
  knowledge	
  from	
  inside	
  and	
  outside	
  the	
  discipline	
  and	
  who	
  explicitly	
  reshapes	
  the	
  knowledge,	
   discards	
  parts,	
  augments	
  parts	
  and	
  juxtaposes	
  elements	
  on	
  the	
  way	
  to	
  proposing	
  a	
  new	
  design	
   (Downton,	
  2003).	
  Martin	
  (2009)	
  suggests	
  design-­‐thinkers	
  actively	
  look	
  for	
  new	
  data	
  points,	
  challenge	
   accepted	
  explanations	
  and	
  infer	
  possible	
  new	
  worlds,	
  yet	
  design	
  to	
  what	
  is	
  technologically	
  feasible	
  and	
   makes	
  business	
  sense.	
  Innovative	
  products	
  launched	
  without	
  this	
  awareness	
  are	
  research	
  projects	
  with	
   no	
  future	
  or	
  means	
  for	
  value	
  creation.	
   	
   Practitioners	
  and	
  scholars	
  (Brown,	
  2009;	
  Dell'Era	
  et	
  al,	
  2010;	
  Martin,	
  2009;	
  Marshall,	
  2010;	
  Verganti,	
   2010)	
  agree	
  that	
  design	
  and	
  innovation-­‐led	
  businesses	
  focus	
  on	
  creative	
  ideation,	
  production,	
  and	
  the	
   application	
  of	
  science,	
  mathematics,	
  engineering	
  and	
  technology	
  expertise	
  to	
  serve	
  more	
  tangible	
  and	
   pragmatic	
  human	
  needs.	
  These	
  innovative	
  firms	
  actively	
  practice	
  imaginative,	
  improvisational,	
  and	
   creative	
  design;	
  igniting,	
  seeding,	
  “hatching,”	
  accelerating,	
  and	
  scaling	
  promising	
  prototypes	
  and	
   innovations	
  into	
  products,	
  services,	
  processes,	
  and	
  systems.	
  The	
  opportunity	
  for	
  the	
  business	
  incubator	
   is	
  to	
  serve	
  as	
  a	
  magnet,	
  disruption	
  amplifier,	
  and	
  innovation	
  and	
  design	
  accelerator,	
  and	
  focus	
  on	
   developing	
  innovation	
  and	
  design-­‐based	
  thinking	
  (Marshall,	
  2010).	
   	
   The	
  design-­‐push	
  or	
  design-­‐driven	
  approach	
  is	
  a	
  new	
  theory	
  of	
  innovation	
  that	
  results	
  from	
  merging	
  the	
   novelty	
  of	
  message	
  with	
  market-­‐pull	
  and	
  technology-­‐push	
  approaches.	
  The	
  market-­‐pull	
  approach	
  is	
   focused	
  on	
  consumer	
  needs	
  as	
  the	
  main	
  source	
  of	
  innovation.	
  The	
  technology-­‐push	
  approach	
  relies	
  on	
   research	
  and	
  development	
  activities	
  to	
  develop	
  new	
  technologies	
  and	
  create	
  new	
  products.	
  The	
   design-­‐push	
  or	
  design-­‐driven	
  approach	
  when	
  of	
  novelty	
  of	
  message	
  and	
  design	
  is	
  combined	
  with	
   market-­‐pull	
  and	
  technology-­‐push	
  activities	
  (Verganti,	
  2010).	
   	
   A	
  comprehensive	
  design-­‐driven	
  innovation	
  model	
  suggests	
  having	
  characteristics	
  of	
  integration,	
   multidisciplinary,	
  and	
  permeable	
  (Acklin,	
  2010).	
  Integration	
  describes	
  the	
  intertwining	
  of	
  strategy	
   building,	
  innovation,	
  and	
  design	
  management,	
  allowing	
  for	
  the	
  creation	
  of	
  new	
  and	
  meaningful	
   products,	
  services,	
  and	
  experiences.	
  Multidisciplinary,	
  central	
  to	
  design	
  thinking,	
  involves	
  engaging	
   members	
  from	
  a	
  variety	
  of	
  management	
  functions,	
  from	
  marketing,	
  engineering,	
  sales,	
   communication,	
  to	
  design,	
  etc.	
  Permeable	
  refers	
  to	
  being	
  both	
  inner	
  and	
  outer-­‐oriented.	
  For	
  example,	
   combining	
  R&D	
  activities	
  with	
  methods	
  of	
  open	
  innovation	
  by	
  inviting	
  consumers	
  and	
  users	
  to	
  co-­‐ create	
  new	
  offerings	
  (Acklin,	
  2010).	
  	
   	
   The	
  link	
  between	
  business	
  incubation,	
  design	
  thinking	
  and	
  innovation	
  becomes	
  clearer	
  when	
  discussing	
   entrepreneurs	
  and	
  design	
  thinkers	
  in	
  the	
  innovation	
  process.	
  As	
  entrepreneurs	
  take	
  an	
  intangible	
   business	
  idea	
  and	
  make	
  it	
  concrete	
  through	
  a	
  synthesizing	
  process	
  facilitated	
  by	
  business	
  incubators	
   (van	
  Zyl,	
  2008),	
  design	
  thinkers	
  move	
  between	
  the	
  abstract	
  and	
  concrete,	
  between	
  analysis	
  and	
   synthesis	
  to	
  execute	
  that	
  process.	
  Assembling	
  the	
  right	
  mix	
  of	
  people	
  on	
  the	
  team	
  to	
  execute	
  the	
   process	
  and	
  providing	
  a	
  leader	
  for	
  that	
  team	
  with	
  leadership	
  skills,	
  who	
  understands	
  the	
  process	
  and	
   who	
  can	
  integrate	
  the	
  diverse	
  ways	
  of	
  thinking	
  (Beckman	
  and	
  Barry,	
  2007)	
  thus	
  falls	
  on	
  the	
  business	
   incubator.	
  	
   	
   An	
  example	
  of	
  a	
  design-­‐driven	
  incubator	
  is	
  the	
  Design	
  Council’s	
  Designing	
  Demand	
  program.	
  Launched	
   in	
  the	
  UK	
  in	
  2004,	
  it	
  comprises	
  three	
  distinct	
  incubator	
  programs:	
  Generate,	
  for	
  SMEs	
  with	
  growth	
   potential;	
  Innovate,	
  for	
  hi-­‐tech	
  ventures	
  to	
  overcome	
  their	
  business,	
  technology	
  and	
  market	
  challenges	
   Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  –	
  August	
  2012	
   through	
  multiple	
  design	
  projects;	
  and	
  Immerse,	
  a	
  service	
  for	
  larger	
  companies	
  to	
  tackle	
  strategic	
   challenges	
  through	
  multiple	
  design	
  projects.	
  Their	
  efforts	
  to	
  date	
  is	
  that	
  1,500	
  businesses	
  now	
  believe	
   design	
  can	
  make	
  them	
  more	
  competitive,	
  the	
  Generate	
  service	
  has	
  yielded	
  over	
  millions	
  in	
  new	
  sales,	
   and	
  that	
  the	
  Immerse	
  service	
  influenced	
  90%	
  of	
  businesses	
  to	
  lead	
  design	
  projects	
  which	
  in	
  turn	
   proved	
  critical	
  to	
  their	
  success	
  with	
  sales	
  outperforming	
  by	
  14	
  per	
  cent.	
  It	
  was	
  concluded	
  that	
  for	
  every	
   £1	
  invested	
  in	
  design,	
  it	
  returned	
  £50	
  (Ward,	
  Runcie	
  and	
  Morris,	
  2009).	
  Their	
  successful	
  formula	
  is	
   focused	
  in	
  five	
  areas	
  where	
  design	
  is	
  proven	
  to	
  add	
  value	
  to	
  new	
  and	
  existing	
  businesses.	
  The	
  five	
   areas	
  are:	
  vision	
  and	
  strategy,	
  brand	
  and	
  identity,	
  product	
  and	
  service,	
  user	
  experience	
  and	
  innovative	
   culture.	
  The	
  Designing	
  Demand	
  program	
  enables	
  “design	
  associates”	
  to	
  structure	
  their	
  influence	
  across	
   sectors	
  and	
  companies	
  and	
  with	
  the	
  senior	
  managers	
  of	
  each	
  business	
  to	
  map	
  out	
  opportunities	
  for	
   design-­‐led	
  improvements	
  and	
  innovations.	
  The	
  program,	
  supported	
  by	
  the	
  Design	
  Council’s	
  extensive	
   body	
  of	
  evidence,	
  embraces	
  and	
  applies	
  design	
  thinking	
  to	
  new	
  and	
  existing	
  companies	
  to	
  redefine	
  the	
   business	
  strategy,	
  reorganize	
  their	
  product	
  range,	
  reduce	
  costs,	
  open	
  up	
  new	
  markets,	
  and	
  experience	
   innovation	
  through	
  peer-­‐based	
  learning	
  (Ward,	
  Runcie	
  and	
  Morris,	
  2009).	
  	
   	
   The	
  UK	
  example	
  (Ward	
  et	
  al,	
  2009)	
  provides	
  evidence	
  that	
  business	
  incubators	
  that	
  integrate	
  design	
   thinking	
  are	
  well	
  positioned	
  to	
  nurture	
  invention	
  into	
  successful	
  innovations.	
  As	
  incubators	
  evolve	
  into	
   innovative	
  firms,	
  they	
  will	
  step	
  back	
  from	
  users	
  and	
  take	
  a	
  broader	
  perspective.	
  They	
  will	
  explore	
  how	
   the	
  context	
  in	
  which	
  people	
  buy	
  things	
  is	
  changing	
  and	
  how	
  technologies,	
  products,	
  and	
  services	
  are	
   shaping	
  that	
  context,	
  and	
  embrace	
  “social-­‐cultural	
  observation”(Verganti,	
  2010).	
  Lockwood	
  (2010)	
   suggests	
  by	
  embracing	
  the	
  process	
  of	
  design-­‐led	
  innovation,	
  new	
  management	
  processes	
  and	
  styles	
   can	
  be	
  explored	
  within	
  adaptive,	
  dynamic	
  systems	
  that	
  ultimately	
  generate	
  innovative	
  strategies,	
   products	
  and	
  services.	
  	
   	
   	
  4.	
  	
  The	
  next	
  generation	
  of	
  incubators	
   	
   In	
  the	
  21st	
  century,	
  business	
  incubators	
  and	
  their	
  entrepreneurs	
  face	
  a	
  world	
  of	
  unprecedented	
   connectivity,	
  undisputed	
  global	
  interdependence,	
  and	
  the	
  emerging	
  realization	
  that	
  our	
  scientific,	
   economic,	
  sociopolitical,	
  and	
  environmental	
  futures	
  are	
  inextricably	
  linked	
  -­‐-­‐	
  causing	
  us	
  to	
  re-­‐evaluate	
   and	
  redesign	
  business	
  models,	
  policies	
  and	
  strategies	
  (Brown,	
  2009).	
  The	
  most	
  current	
   multidisciplinary	
  research	
  suggests	
  a	
  few	
  business	
  incubators	
  have	
  evolved	
  -­‐-­‐	
  redefining	
  themselves	
   with	
  new	
  models,	
  new	
  thinking	
  and	
  new	
  innovation	
  approaches.	
  The	
  examples	
  that	
  follow	
  offer	
   observations	
  into	
  the	
  next	
  generation	
  of	
  business	
  incubators,	
  those	
  building	
  strong	
  links	
  between	
   design	
  thinking	
  and	
  innovation.	
  	
   	
   The	
  innovation	
  and	
  incubation	
  hub	
  in	
  Finland’s	
  Otaniemi	
  forest	
  is	
  regarded	
  as	
  one	
  model	
  to	
  follow	
   (Himanen	
  et	
  al,	
  2011).	
  Situated	
  on	
  the	
  peninsula	
  at	
  the	
  very	
  tip	
  of	
  Helsinki’s	
  metropolis,	
  the	
  former	
   farmland	
  is	
  now	
  a	
  globally	
  acclaimed	
  creative	
  hub	
  that	
  actively	
  innovates	
  in	
  three	
  different	
  sectors:	
  IT,	
   energy,	
  and	
  biotechnology.	
  Helsinki,	
  awarded	
  the	
  2012	
  World	
  Design	
  Capital,	
  has	
  produced	
  IT	
  success	
   stories	
  as	
  Nokia,	
  Rovio,	
  and	
  Linux,	
  and	
  is	
  currently	
  leading	
  alternative	
  energy	
  research	
  on	
  wood	
  as	
  the	
   new	
  oil	
  in	
  biotechnology	
  and	
  energy	
  sectors.	
  Companies	
  work	
  in	
  close	
  contact	
  with	
  Finland’s	
  leading	
   universities	
  to	
  generate	
  technological,	
  economic,	
  and	
  design	
  innovations	
  needed	
  to	
  compete	
  globally	
   under	
  the	
  motto	
  “where	
  science	
  and	
  the	
  arts	
  meet	
  technology	
  and	
  business.”	
  Their	
  recipe	
  is	
  based	
  on	
   methodological	
  sciences	
  (from	
  computational	
  modeling	
  to	
  the	
  methods	
  behind	
  art	
  and	
  creativity);	
   Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  –	
  August	
  2012	
   media	
  (information	
  and	
  communication	
  technology	
  and	
  expression);	
  materials	
  (from	
  nanotechnology	
   to	
  materials	
  for	
  art	
  and	
  design);	
  and	
  modeling,	
  which	
  includes	
  all	
  forms	
  of	
  design.	
  The	
  physical	
  and	
   philosophical	
  elements	
  of	
  their	
  model	
  brings	
  professionals	
  and	
  producer-­‐managers	
  (from	
  risk	
   investment	
  to	
  marketing)	
  into	
  a	
  culture	
  of	
  creativity—inspiring	
  people	
  to	
  realize	
  their	
  full	
  potential.	
   Finland’s	
  incubation	
  model	
  is	
  unique	
  as	
  it	
  combines	
  innovation-­‐based	
  competitiveness	
  with	
  social	
   inclusion.	
  Unlike	
  the	
  Silicon	
  Valley	
  incubator-­‐inspired	
  model	
  of	
  the	
  90s	
  where	
  new	
  millionaires	
  were	
   produced	
  at	
  a	
  rapid	
  pace,	
  while	
  a	
  fifth	
  of	
  the	
  population	
  lives	
  below	
  the	
  poverty	
  line,	
  Finland’s	
  model	
   affords	
  varying	
  dynamic	
  economic	
  models	
  for	
  innovation	
  through	
  social	
  inclusion	
  strategies.	
  This	
   virtuous	
  circle	
  generates	
  success	
  in	
  the	
  innovation	
  economy	
  allowing	
  for	
  continued	
  public	
  investments	
   in	
  education	
  and	
  health	
  care,	
  which	
  in	
  turn	
  produces	
  new	
  highly	
  educated	
  people	
  to	
  continue	
  the	
   economic	
  success	
  (Himanen	
  et	
  al,	
  2011).	
   	
   The	
  new	
  incubator	
  models	
  are	
  integrating	
  creativity.	
  Research	
  from	
  BarcelonActiva,	
  a	
  25-­‐year	
  business	
   incubating	
  veteran	
  that	
  is	
  part	
  government-­‐	
  part	
  private-­‐funded	
  business	
  incubator	
  presents	
  evidence	
   of	
  high	
  survival	
  rate	
  among	
  its	
  graduated	
  tenants.	
  Rooted	
  in	
  a	
  design-­‐oriented	
  culture,	
  it	
  offers	
  services	
   to	
  the	
  creative	
  industries,	
  information	
  technology	
  and	
  high	
  tech	
  sectors,	
  and	
  to	
  both	
  Spanish	
  and	
   international	
  business	
  communities.	
  Their	
  facilities	
  comprise	
  an	
  entrepreneurship	
  resource	
  centre,	
   technology	
  park,	
  business	
  incubator	
  lab	
  and	
  venture	
  transformation	
  space.	
  The	
  incubator	
  has	
  a	
  “walk	
   in”	
  policy	
  when	
  it	
  comes	
  to	
  their	
  selection	
  process,	
  thus	
  any	
  person	
  with	
  a	
  business	
  idea	
  can	
  go	
   through	
  the	
  process,	
  but	
  there	
  is	
  a	
  waiting	
  list.	
  Their	
  incubation	
  period	
  is	
  three	
  years.	
  They	
  have	
   readjusted	
  their	
  service-­‐offering,	
  facilities	
  and	
  management	
  styles	
  to	
  best	
  fit	
  market	
  needs,	
  which	
  may	
   be	
  indicators	
  of	
  their	
  longevity	
  and	
  success	
  (Moscovis	
  and	
  Serup,	
  2012).	
  	
   	
   Enterpreneur-­‐tenants	
  and	
  managers	
  in	
  creative	
  industries	
  incubators	
  tend	
  to	
  network,	
  collaborate,	
   share,	
  and	
  foster	
  communication	
  amongst	
  the	
  participants	
  and	
  community	
  inside	
  and	
  outside	
  the	
   incubator.	
  They	
  embrace	
  entrepreneurial	
  risk	
  and	
  have	
  managers	
  who	
  are	
  simultaneously	
  open	
  and	
   exclusive.	
  A	
  successful,	
  design-­‐led	
  for-­‐profit	
  business	
  incubator	
  is	
  Denmark’s	
  MG50.	
  Design	
  and	
   collaboration	
  played	
  an	
  important	
  role	
  in	
  the	
  creation	
  and	
  construction	
  of	
  Danish	
  incubator	
  MG50	
  as	
  a	
   top	
  performing	
  “networked	
  BI”.	
  MG50	
  does	
  not	
  lend	
  initial	
  capital	
  nor	
  provide	
  professional	
  business	
   services	
  to	
  their	
  paying	
  tenants,	
  instead	
  they	
  provide	
  physical	
  structure	
  and	
  enable	
  social	
  interaction	
   through	
  a	
  co-­‐operative	
  business	
  model.	
  The	
  construction	
  design	
  and	
  management	
  style	
  of	
  MG50	
  was	
   very	
  important	
  in	
  creating	
  trusts	
  between	
  the	
  tenants	
  and	
  in	
  giving	
  tenants	
  the	
  entrepreneurial	
  drive	
   they	
  need	
  to	
  succeed	
  (Bollingtoft	
  and	
  Ulhoi,	
  2005).	
   	
   Creative	
  industries	
  incubators	
  operate	
  differently	
  from	
  most	
  high-­‐tech	
  incubators,	
  which	
  are	
   characterized	
  as	
  formal,	
  prescriptive	
  and	
  exclusive	
  access	
  to	
  persons	
  of	
  value	
  (e.g.	
  Venture	
  capitalists,	
   industry	
  veterans)	
  in	
  an	
  effort	
  to	
  protect	
  their	
  idea,	
  but	
  research	
  suggests	
  they	
  could	
  benefit	
  by	
  more	
   collective	
  and	
  collaborative	
  workspaces	
  (Moscovis	
  and	
  Serup,	
  2012).	
  Studies	
  indicate	
  that	
  creative	
   entrepreneurs	
  and	
  creative	
  business	
  incubators	
  put	
  value	
  into	
  the	
  space	
  around	
  them,	
  as	
  they	
  do	
  with	
   clothes	
  and	
  other	
  aesthetics	
  and	
  clustering	
  in	
  cultural	
  and	
  creative	
  industries	
  as	
  New	
  York,	
  Berlin	
  and	
   London	
  (Moscovis	
  et	
  al,	
  2012).	
  Supporting	
  research	
  suggests	
  adopting	
  a	
  balance	
  between	
  the	
  ad	
  hoc	
   nature	
  of	
  the	
  creative	
  process	
  and	
  industry	
  with	
  the	
  rigour	
  of	
  design	
  and	
  engineering	
  may	
  be	
   appropriate	
  to	
  adopt	
  for	
  the	
  next	
  generation	
  of	
  business	
  incubators	
  (Moscovis	
  and	
  Serup,	
  2012).	
  Marty	
   Neumeler	
  observes	
  in	
  the	
  Designful	
  Company	
  (2009)	
  that	
  creativity	
  in	
  its	
  various	
  forms	
  has	
  become	
  the	
   Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  –	
  August	
  2012	
   number	
  one	
  engine	
  of	
  economic	
  growth.	
  Connecting	
  interdisciplinary	
  studies,	
  it	
  appears	
  the	
  new	
   incubators	
  may	
  in	
  fact	
  be	
  borrowing	
  from	
  the	
  past,	
  inspired	
  by	
  Andy	
  Warhol’s	
  Factory	
  or	
  Tony	
  Wilson’s	
   Haçienda	
  and	
  Factory	
  Records.	
  Warhol’s	
  Factory	
  is	
  a	
  great	
  example	
  of	
  a	
  successful	
  innovation	
   incubator.	
  He	
  created	
  an	
  innovation	
  climate	
  through	
  a	
  physical	
  and	
  psychological	
  environment	
  where	
   people	
  would	
  be	
  inspired	
  to	
  think	
  great	
  ideas	
  and	
  then	
  convert	
  them	
  to	
  finished	
  product.	
  He	
   understood	
  the	
  collective	
  nature	
  of	
  creativity,	
  where	
  fashion,	
  art,	
  film,	
  music	
  and	
  design	
  could	
   intersect,	
  be	
  shared	
  and	
  also	
  resourced.	
  Warhol	
  generated	
  real	
  economic	
  value	
  to	
  those	
  who	
   participated	
  in	
  it,	
  experienced	
  it	
  from	
  a	
  Factory	
  event	
  or	
  consumed	
  its	
  products	
  (Currid,	
  2007).	
  	
   	
   The	
  new	
  incubators	
  are	
  learning	
  from	
  design-­‐led	
  companies.	
  Evidence-­‐based	
  research	
  from	
  Dow	
  and	
   Klemmer	
  (2010)	
  showed	
  that	
  designers	
  in	
  the	
  iteration	
  condition,	
  i.e.	
  with	
  multiple	
  rounds	
  of	
   prototyping,	
  outperformed	
  those	
  who	
  only	
  prototyped	
  once.	
  Prior	
  experience	
  with	
  iteration	
  proves	
  to	
   be	
  a	
  positive	
  performance	
  indicator	
  as	
  designers	
  tend	
  to	
  discover	
  more	
  flaws	
  and	
  constraints	
  and	
  try	
   new	
  concepts.	
  This	
  is	
  valuable	
  data	
  for	
  design	
  companies	
  which	
  always	
  operate	
  under	
  tight	
  time	
   constraints	
  in	
  the	
  race	
  for	
  early	
  market	
  entry	
  with	
  innovative	
  products.	
  (Dow	
  and	
  Klemmer,	
  2010)	
   	
   Designing	
  the	
  next	
  generation	
  of	
  business	
  incubators	
  will	
  also	
  take	
  agility.	
  This	
  school	
  of	
  thought	
  is	
  well	
   supported	
  by	
  practitioners	
  of	
  Eric	
  Ries	
  (2010)	
  ’s	
  best	
  selling	
  book	
  “The	
  Lean	
  Start-­‐up”	
  and	
  reflects	
  Sir	
   Francis	
  Bacon’s	
  quote	
  "he	
  that	
  will	
  not	
  apply	
  new	
  remedies	
  must	
  expect	
  new	
  evils,	
  for	
  time	
  is	
  the	
   greatest	
  innovator”.	
  Agility	
  is	
  considered	
  an	
  emerging	
  concept	
  that	
  happens	
  when	
  an	
  organization	
  has	
   the	
  right	
  mindset,	
  the	
  right	
  skills	
  and	
  the	
  ability	
  to	
  multiply	
  those	
  skills	
  through	
  collaboration	
   (Neumeier,	
  2008).	
  To	
  count	
  agility	
  as	
  a	
  core	
  competence,	
  it	
  must	
  be	
  embedded	
  into	
  the	
  culture,	
   encourage	
  an	
  appetite	
  for	
  radical	
  ideas	
  and	
  embrace	
  a	
  constant	
  state	
  of	
  inventiveness.	
  Neumeier	
   (2008)	
  suggests	
  that	
  to	
  organize	
  for	
  agility,	
  a	
  company	
  needs	
  to	
  develop	
  a	
  “designful	
  mind”,	
  the	
  ability	
   to	
  invent	
  the	
  widest	
  range	
  of	
  solutions	
  for	
  the	
  wicked	
  problems	
  now	
  facing	
  your	
  company,	
  your	
   industry,	
  your	
  world.	
  (Neumeier,	
  2008).	
  	
   	
   The	
  literature	
  reviewed	
  in	
  this	
  paper	
  presents	
  evidence	
  that	
  a	
  successful	
  methodology	
  for	
  innovation	
  is	
   emerging.	
  It	
  integrates	
  human,	
  business,	
  and	
  technological	
  factors	
  in	
  problem	
  forming,	
  solving	
  and	
   design	
  and	
  is	
  referred	
  to	
  as	
  “Design	
  Thinking.”	
  Its	
  human-­‐centric	
  methodology	
  integrates	
  expertise	
   from	
  design,	
  social	
  sciences,	
  engineering,	
  and	
  business.	
  It	
  blends	
  an	
  end-­‐user	
  focus	
  with	
   multidisciplinary	
  collaboration	
  and	
  iterative	
  improvement	
  to	
  produce	
  innovative	
  products,	
  systems,	
   and	
  services.	
  Through	
  iterative	
  experimentation,	
  Luebbe	
  and	
  Weske	
  (2011)	
  used	
  design	
  thinking	
   factors	
  such	
  as	
  physical	
  elements	
  (plastic	
  building	
  blocks	
  as	
  tangible	
  prototypes),	
  methodological	
   guidance,	
  and	
  intensive	
  end-­‐user/participant	
  involvement	
  to	
  illustrate	
  the	
  positive	
  results	
  and	
   relevance	
  for	
  successful	
  approach	
  and	
  application	
  in	
  real-­‐world	
  companies	
  (Meinel,	
  Leifer	
  and	
  Plattner,	
   2011).	
  Evolving	
  R&D	
  models	
  to	
  integrate	
  design	
  thinking	
  methods	
  may	
  also	
  improve	
  BI	
  success.	
  A	
   Business	
  Week	
  examined	
  if	
  there	
  was	
  a	
  way	
  for	
  investors	
  to	
  spot	
  early	
  innovation	
  opportunities	
  that	
   had	
  a	
  higher	
  chance	
  of	
  success.	
  And	
  the	
  point	
  made	
  was:	
  “There	
  is	
  no	
  simple	
  correlation	
  between	
   increased	
  research	
  and	
  development	
  spending	
  and	
  higher	
  stock	
  prices.	
  In	
  fact,	
  stepped-­‐up	
  research	
  &	
   development	
  often	
  depresses	
  near-­‐term	
  earnings	
  because	
  those	
  costs	
  must	
  be	
  expensed	
  now	
  while	
   the	
  payoff	
  of	
  new	
  innovative	
  products	
  could	
  be	
  years	
  away.	
  Besides,	
  much	
  research	
  &	
  development	
   spending	
  produces	
  nothing	
  that	
  customers	
  want	
  (Kyfinn	
  and	
  Gardien,	
  2009).	
  	
   	
   Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  –	
  August	
  2012	
   If	
  incubators	
  were	
  to	
  focus	
  is	
  on	
  imaginative,	
  improvisational,	
  and	
  creative	
  design;	
  igniting,	
  seeding,	
   “hatching,”	
  accelerating,	
  and	
  scaling	
  promising	
  prototypes	
  and	
  innovations	
  in	
  products,	
  services,	
   processes,	
  and	
  systems,	
  new	
  ideas	
  and	
  useful	
  valuable	
  solutions	
  will	
  result.	
  Marshall	
  (2010)	
  suggests	
   the	
  incubator	
  should	
  serve	
  as	
  a	
  magnet,	
  disruption	
  amplifier,	
  and	
  innovation	
  and	
  design	
  accelerator	
  –	
   thus,	
  focus	
  on	
  developing	
  innovation	
  through	
  design-­‐based	
  thinking.	
   	
   5.	
  Conclusion:	
   	
   The	
  purpose	
  of	
  this	
  paper	
  is	
  to	
  broaden	
  the	
  understanding	
  of	
  the	
  effects	
  of	
  design	
  thinking	
  and	
   innovation	
  within	
  business	
  incubators.	
  It	
  suggests	
  incubators	
  are	
  well	
  positioned	
  to	
  provide	
  the	
   required	
  habitat	
  and	
  innovation	
  ecosystem	
  that	
  invites	
  experimentation,	
  celebrates	
  failure,	
  rewards	
   invention	
  and	
  irreverence,	
  and	
  encourages	
  the	
  passionate	
  pursuit	
  of	
  invention	
  turned	
  new	
  venture.	
  It	
   argues	
  that	
  design	
  thinking	
  plays	
  a	
  critical	
  role	
  in	
  the	
  innovation	
  process	
  where	
  new	
  management	
   processes	
  and	
  styles	
  can	
  be	
  explored	
  within	
  a	
  adaptive,	
  dynamic	
  systems	
  to	
  generate	
  innovative	
   strategies,	
  products	
  and	
  services.	
  	
   	
   Although	
  design	
  thinking	
  is	
  well	
  positioned	
  to	
  nurture	
  invention	
  into	
  successful	
  innovations,	
  and	
  has	
  an	
   important	
  role	
  within	
  business	
  incubators,	
  knowledge	
  and	
  adoption	
  of	
  design	
  thinking	
  methods	
   remains	
  low	
  for	
  most	
  business	
  incubator	
  managers,	
  entrepreneurs	
  and	
  SMEs.	
   	
   The	
  literature	
  suggests	
  the	
  next	
  generation	
  of	
  business	
  incubators	
  are	
  integrating	
  design	
  thinking,	
   creativity,	
  innovation	
  and	
  agility,	
  and	
  infers	
  the	
  need	
  for	
  new	
  incubator	
  leadership,	
  a	
  new	
  breed	
  of	
   management	
  who	
  can	
  lead	
  and	
  grow	
  tomorrow’s	
  entrepreneurs	
  and	
  their	
  ventures.	
  The	
  new	
  manager	
   will	
  need	
  to	
  be	
  globally	
  networked,	
  agile,	
  intuitive,	
  risk	
  and	
  novelty	
  seeking,	
  creative,	
  collaborative,	
   failure	
  resilient,	
  analytical,	
  playful,	
  and	
  problem	
  focused	
  -­‐-­‐	
  aka	
  a	
  design	
  thinker.	
  	
   	
   An	
  area	
  for	
  future	
  research	
  will	
  be	
  to	
  investigate	
  both	
  the	
  incubator	
  managers	
  and	
  entrepreneurs	
  and	
   their	
  knowledge	
  and	
  application	
  of	
  design	
  thinking	
  as	
  an	
  approach	
  to	
  innovation	
  and	
  successful	
  start-­‐ up	
  development.	
  A	
  closer	
  examination	
  of	
  the	
  passionate	
  champion	
  -­‐-­‐	
  genius	
  and	
  visionary	
  -­‐-­‐	
  behind	
  the	
   idea	
  and	
  new	
  venture	
  and	
  their	
  commitment	
  to	
  the	
  collaborative	
  principles	
  of	
  design	
  thinking	
  is	
   warranted.	
  The	
  research	
  question	
  may	
  be	
  “What	
  is	
  the	
  role	
  of	
  design	
  thinkers	
  in	
  the	
  business	
   incubation	
  process	
  and	
  are	
  design	
  thinkers	
  the	
  entrepreneurs	
  of	
  the	
  future?”	
  	
   	
   	
   Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  –	
  August	
  2012	
   5.	
  References	
   	
   Amabile,	
  T.M	
  and	
  Gryskiewicz,	
  N.D.	
  (1989).	
  The	
  creative	
  environment	
  scales:	
  work	
  environment	
  inventory.	
   Creativity	
  Research	
  Journal,	
  2,	
  231-­‐253.	
   	
   Açar,	
  A.E.	
  and	
  Rother,	
  D.	
  S.	
  (2011).	
  Design	
  Thinking	
  in	
  Engineering	
  Education	
  and	
  its	
  Adoption	
  in	
  Technology-­‐ driven	
  Start-­‐ups.	
  Advances	
  in	
  Sustainable	
  Manufacturing,	
  Part	
  2,	
  57-­‐62	
   	
   Acklin,	
  C.	
  (2010).	
  Design-­‐Driven	
  Innovation	
  Process	
  Model.	
  Design	
  Management	
  Journal,	
  5(1),	
  50–60.	
   	
   Bollingtoft,	
  A.	
  and	
  Ulhoi,	
  J.P.	
  (2005).	
  The	
  networked	
  business	
  incubator—leveraging	
  entrepreneurial	
  agency?	
   Journal	
  of	
  Business	
  Venturing.	
  20(2).	
   http://www.cetim.org/Projects%5CArticles/24_The%20Networked%20incubator%20(2).pdf	
   	
   Beckman,	
  S.L.	
  and	
  Barry,	
  M.	
  (2007)	
  Innovation	
  as	
  a	
  Learning	
  Process:	
  Embedding	
  Design	
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  California	
   Management	
  Review	
  Vol	
  50.	
  No.	
  1	
   	
   Bejarano,	
  T.	
  (2012).	
  Brazil:	
  Measuring	
  the	
  Constructs	
  of	
  the	
  Business	
  Incubation	
  Process	
  	
  	
   Dissertation/Thesis.	
  Arizona	
  State	
  University	
  1509207	
   	
   Brown,	
  T.	
  (2008).	
  Design	
  Thinking	
  and	
  How	
  to	
  make	
  Design	
  Thinking	
  Part	
  of	
  the	
  Innovation	
  Drill.	
  Harvard	
   Business	
  Review.	
   	
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  S.K.	
  (2011).	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  and	
  Sustainable	
  Innovation.	
  Annals	
  of	
  the	
  University	
  of	
  Oradea	
  :	
   Economic	
  Science,	
  ISSN	
  1222-­‐569X,	
  07/2011,	
  1(1),	
  779	
  –	
  785	
   	
   Bjornard,	
  E.T.	
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  Quote	
  from	
  an	
  article	
  Method,	
  Not	
  Madness	
  -­‐	
  Innovation	
  may	
  look	
  	
   casual.	
  But	
  behind	
  every	
  creative	
  leap,	
  there’s	
  a	
  real	
  process	
  at	
  work,	
  by	
  Samar	
  Farah,	
  CMO	
  Magazine,	
  	
   www.cmomagazine.com	
   	
   Chen,	
  C.H.	
  (2012).	
  Factors	
  Influencing	
  creativity	
  in	
  Business	
  Innovation:	
  From	
  the	
  perspective	
  of	
   Csikszentmihaly’s	
  Creativity	
  System.	
  Dahan	
  Institute	
  of	
  Technology	
  (TAIWAN)	
   	
   Chesbrough,	
  H.	
  and	
  Rosenbloom,	
  R.S.	
  (2002).	
  The	
  role	
  of	
  business	
  model	
  in	
  capturing	
  value	
  from	
  innovation.	
   Evidence	
  from	
  Xerox	
  Corporation´s	
  technology.	
  Industrial	
  and	
  Corporate	
  Change	
  11(3),	
  529-­‐555.	
   	
   Chesbrough,	
  H.	
  (2003).	
  Open	
  Innovation:	
  The	
  New	
  Imperative	
  for	
  Creating	
  and	
  Profiting	
  from	
  Technology.	
   Boston:	
  Harvard	
  Business	
  School	
  Press.	
   	
   Chesbrough,	
  	
  H.,	
  Vanhaverbeke,	
  W.	
  and	
  West,	
  J	
  (2006).	
  Open	
  Innovation:	
  Researching	
  a	
  New	
  	
   Paradigm.	
  Oxford:	
  Oxford	
  University	
  Press.	
  	
   	
   Currid,	
  E.	
  (2007).	
  The	
  Warhol	
  Economy.	
  Princeton	
  University	
  Press.	
   	
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  C.,	
  Marchesi	
  A.	
  and	
  Verganti,R.	
  (2010).	
  Mastering	
  technologies	
  in	
  design-­‐driven	
  innovation:	
  how	
  two	
   Italian	
  companies	
  made	
  design	
  a	
  central	
  part	
  of	
  their	
  innovation	
  process.	
  Research-­‐Technology	
  Management,	
   53(2),	
  12	
   	
   Design	
  Thinking,	
  Innovation	
  and	
  Business	
  Incubators	
  –	
  August	
  2012	
   Design	
  Council	
  (2011),	
  Design	
  for	
  Innovation	
  Report.	
  Facts,	
  figures	
  and	
  practical	
  plans	
  for	
  growth.	
  	
   http://www.scribd.com/doc/78644248/Design-­‐For-­‐Innovation	
   	
   Dunphy,	
  S.M.,	
  Herbig,	
  P.R.	
  and	
  Howes,	
  M.E.	
  (1996).	
  The	
  Innovation	
  Funnel.	
  Technological	
  Forecasting	
  and	
  Social	
   Change,	
  53(3),	
  279-­‐292	
   	
   Dow,	
  S.	
  and	
  Klemmer,S.	
  (2010).	
  Chapter	
  7.	
  Design	
  Thinking:	
  Understand-­‐Improve-­‐Apply.	
  (Understanding	
   Innovation).	
  Springer	
  Publishers.	
   	
   Downton	
  (2003)	
  Design	
  Research,	
  Melbourne,	
  RMIT	
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   Dyson,	
  J.	
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  The	
  Design	
  Process:	
  Designing	
  the	
  Dyson	
  Airblade.	
  James	
  Dyson	
  Foundation	
   http://media.dyson.com/downloads/JDF/Poster_2_How.pdf	
   	
   Edquist,	
  C	
  2005.	
  Systems	
  of	
  innovation:	
  Perspectives	
  and	
  challenges,	
  in	
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  Fagerberg	
  et	
  al	
  (eds),	
  The	
  Oxford	
  Book	
   of	
  Innovation,	
  Oxford	
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  pp.	
  181-­‐208.	
   	
   Fang,	
  S.,	
  Tsai,	
  F.	
  and	
  Lin,	
  J.L.	
  (2010).	
  Leveraging	
  tenant-­‐incubator	
  social	
  capital	
  for	
  organizational	
  learning	
  and	
   performance	
  in	
  incubation	
  programme.	
  International	
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  90–113	
   	
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  P.	
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  Breathing	
  life	
  into	
  delicate	
  ideas.	
  Developing	
  a	
  network	
  of	
  options	
  to	
  increase	
  the	
  chance	
  	
   of	
  innovation	
  success.	
  Koninklijke	
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  Electronics	
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   Gero,	
  J.S.	
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  Innovation	
  Policy	
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  Design	
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  Krasnow	
  Institute	
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  Value	
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  Innovation	
  Diffusion	
  on	
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  Capital	
  Development	
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  Inside	
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  2012	
   	
   Khalil,	
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  The	
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  Design	
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  Customer	
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  and	
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  Building	
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  and	
   Regions:	
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  from	
  the	
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  Paper	
  presented	
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  the	
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  on	
  the	
   Future	
  of	
  Australia's	
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  Towns,	
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  Re-­‐Imagining	
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  STEM	
  Academies:	
  Igniting	
  and	
  Nurturing	
  Decidedly	
  Different	
   Minds,	
  by	
  Design.	
  Roeper	
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   Martin.	
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  The	
  Design	
  of	
  Business:	
  why	
  design	
  thinking	
  is	
  the	
  new	
  competitive	
  advantage.	
  Chapter	
  1:	
  The	
   Knowledge	
  Funnel:	
  How	
  Discovery	
  Takes	
  Shape,	
  1-­‐31,	
  Harvard	
  Business	
  Press.	
   	
   Mazurkewish,	
  K.	
  (2010).	
  The	
  innovation	
  game;	
  Incubators	
  can	
  lead	
  startups	
  to	
  market.	
  Star-­‐Phoenix	
   Saskatoon,	
  Saskatchewan,	
  C.6.	
   	
   M’Chirgui,	
  Z.	
  (2012).	
  Assessing	
  the	
  Performance	
  of	
  Business	
  Incubators:	
  Recent	
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  Evidence	
  Business	
  and	
   Management	
  Research	
  Journal,	
  1(1)	
  	
   	
   Meinel,	
  C.,	
  Plattner,	
  H.	
  and	
  Leifer,	
  L.	
  (2011).	
  Design	
  Thinking:	
  Understand-­‐-­‐Improve	
  –	
  Apply.	
  Understanding	
   Innovation.	
  Springer.	
   	
   Morris,	
  L.	
  (2009).	
  The	
  Innovation	
  Infrastructure.	
  International	
  Journal	
  of	
  Innovation	
  Science,	
  1(1),	
  41-­‐49	
   	
   Moscovis,	
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