Innovation Ecosystems for Leaders: Delivering Sustainable Competitive Advantage

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NEW for 2017
Based on MIT’s research into the science of "innovation ecosystems," this course will equip executives with the high-level frameworks and tools necessary to understand their innovation landscape and allow them to capture innovation-driven entrepreneurial advantage.

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Innovation Ecosystems for Leaders: Delivering Sustainable Competitive Advantage
Certificate Track: Strategy and Innovation
Location: Cambridge, MA
Tuition: $3,700 (excluding accommodations)
Program Days (for ACE Credit) 2

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Innovation is a driver of productivity, comparative advantage, economic growth, and enterprise value. But innovation does not happen in a vacuum. It requires a network of participants—entrepreneurs, corporate managers, investors, researchers, university faculty, venture capitalists, government officials, suppliers, and customers—who comprise the ecosystem. Innovating in such ecosystems creates a new set of challenges for organizations and their leaders. Executives often find it hard to get beyond the buzzwords to harness the power of this phenomenon for their organizations.


This new course draws on MIT research to provide an introduction to innovation ecosystems, to demystify this important concept, alongside the broader topics of innovation and entrepreneurship, and to explain how the right ecosystem can provide both an inspiration for innovation and source of competitive advantage. Participants will learn to understand their role as stakeholders in innovation ecosystems. They will learn ways to assess both their local and other ecosystems (including Boston and elsewhere) as potential locations for innovation centers, etc. And also to partner with startup entrepreneurs, research universities, ‘risk capital’ providers and other corporate/government stakeholders, on accelerators, prizes, and hackathons.


Participants in the program need not aim to become corporate entrepreneurs or intrapreneurs themselves, but they should want to understand—as leaders and managers—how to access external innovation from the ecosystem, and how to lead on internal innovation.

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Insights for GE as it relocates to Boston's unique "innovation ecosystem"

Phil Budden and Fiona Murray share lessons learned from large corporations' roles in innovation ecosystems.