||Hank Chesbrough described the large shift that has taken place in the way companies innovate over the decades of the twentieth century. From an information landscape where almost all of the valuable knowledge was concentrated in few places such as universities, large corporations, and governments, we've progressed to one in which this knowledge is almost everywhere.
This means that companies can no longer rely on the old "closed" model of innovation, i.e. doing all of their own research, generating their own intellectual property (IP), marketing what fits with their business model and shelving what doesn't.
The book articulated a new "open" model of innovation, arguing that companies must look outside their corporate boundaries for IP that they can purchase and bring in, as well as licensing their home-grown IP to others.
With the seismic shifts that have occurred in IP over the last few years, Chesbrough's open innovation model has been recognised in the high-tech world and beyond as a keenly accurate description of the emerging business innovation environment.