Fundamentally, the IP Foundation adopts an approach that is in effect pulling innovation from Entrepreneurs and Innovators as opposed to leaving them to push their solutions. This approach results in creating a much broader funnel at the start of the process aimed at capturing many more ideas of relevance to the key Stakeholders of an Innovation Partnership.
The process starts by engaging Entrepreneurs and Innovators at a much earlier stage than conventional incubation services, by first clarifying the criteria for solutions that the Key stakeholders of the partnership are willing to support and then reaching out to Entrepreneurs and Innovators through Themed challenges to identify and select the best solutions from a broad range of responses.
This approach has the benefit of binding stakeholders around recognised problems or challenges prior to identifying plausible solutions. It helps to give clarity to Entrepreneurs and innovators, who can respond to challenges in the knowledge that if selected, the resources and key stakeholders needed to progress through the incubation process and build the business case, will be readily available. Furthermore, engaging stakeholders throughout the incubation process helps to remove the moral hazard of information asymmetry, by ensuring the insight needed to evaluate a proposition is readily available.
The conventional approach, starts by engaging Entrepreneurs with a solution seeking the support needed to help them build the business case for their solution. There is a big difference from an Entrepreneurs perspective as this inevitably results in ideas, prototypes and business models being developed in isolation. This adds to the cost and risk of the incubation process, which are inevitably borne by the Entrepreneurs and Innovators themselves. In effect, Entrepreneurs and Innovators must push their ideas at the stakeholders they’re seeking support from. Consequently, many good ideas fall by the wayside and for reasons that often eclipse the merits of a great solution.