Crash Course on Innovation, Creativity

Tina Seelig

Tina Seelig

Tina Seelig, Executive Director for the Stanford Technology Ventures Program (STVP), the entrepreneurship center at Stanford University’s School of Engineering, and the Director of the National Center for Engineering Pathways to Innovation (Epicenter), offers a “crash course” in creativity.

She summarized her recommendations in her book, inGenius: A Crash Course on Creativity, and explored factors that stimulate and inhibit creativity in individuals, teams, and organizations, including framing problems, challenging assumptions, and creative teams.

She introduces six interdependent elements of the “Innovation Engine”:

• Internal
o Information that becomes knowledge (fuel),
o Imagination (a catalytic converter that transforms knowledge into new ideas),
o Attitude (a spark that ignites the Engine, setting it in motion).

• External
o Resources (a community’s assets),
o Habitats (physical locations within which the Engine functions at peak performance),
o Culture (shared beliefs, values, and behaviors of the given community).

inGenius: A Crash Course on Creativity also discusses models and tools that can be applied to class projects:

o The “Theory of Inventive Problem Solving” or TRIZ (the Russian acronym) methodology (Pages 50-51)
o A two-by-two creativity/pressure matrix (106-108)
o Habitats that simulate or inhibit creativity (128-131)
o Edward de Bono’s “Six Thinking Hats” model/exercise (128-131)
o Creating a habitat that encourages and supports risk taking and experimentation (160-163)
o Tapping into and activating strong emotional engagement (179-180)
o Précis: Knowledge, Imagination, and Attitude (185-189)

Seelig was awarded the 2009 Gordon Prize from the National Academy of Engineering, recognizing her as a national leader in engineering education, and the 2008 National Olympus Innovation Award, and the 2005 Stanford Tau Beta Pi Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching.
She earned her Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Stanford University Medical School and has written 16 popular science books and educational games.

Another of Seelig’s books is What I Wish I Knew When I Was 20: A Crash Course on Making Your Place in the World

-*What “Innovation Engine” components have been most effective in generating creative solutions in your organization?

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Blog: – Kathryn Welds | Curated Research and Commentary

©Kathryn Welds

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