Weekly Update - Monday, April 13, 2020

Ed Bernstein, IRI President:


IRI Members helping in the COVID-19 response


IRI's COVID-19 Resources Page


More Innovation News



The Annual Conference is going virtual

Join us for a 21st century conference--without leaving your desk! May 12-May 22, we will be holding our planned 2020 Annual Conference sessions as live webinars and interactive chatrooms. Learn how to adapt your innovation efforts in a global environment, collaborate with remote teams, and how to get the best ROI out of your business strategy when your organization is placed all over the world. Each day will offer virtual sessions pertaining to an element of Global Innovation. 

Here is a sneak peak of the topics that will be covered:

Tuesday May 12: Sustainability

Wednesday, May 13: Global R&D Case Studies

Thursday, May 14: Innovation Culture

Friday, May 15: COVID-19's Effects on Innovation

Monday, May 18: Agile Methods for Global Innovation

Tuesday, May 19: International Partnerships

Wednesday, May 20: Global R&D Case Studies, Round 2

Thursday, May 21: Innovation & Place

Friday, May 22: 2020 IRI Award Winners

We will open registration this week.


In the meantime, we have lined up two more virtual sessions:

A Compendium of Tools for Leading a Successful Global Innovation Team

Presented by Paul Germeraad (view his Compendium)

April 15, 1-2 PM ET 



A Simiplified Approach to Front-End-Innovation (FEI) to Build a Global Innovation Capability for Breakthrough Results

Presented by Marci Ruman, a Global Innovation Strategist of Kimberly-Clark Corporation

April 30, 11 AM-12 PM ET



PILOT research projects info sessions

In the midst of chaos, innovation continues and even grows.  This spring, IRI is launching four new research projects to help keep your organization innovating. Join these webinars to learn how you can get involved.
Organizing Time for Innovation – How can we best allot self-directed innovation time to maximize creative performance? 
Kick off webinar:  Tuesday, April 28, 12 - 1pm EDT; Register
Ideation to H2 Opportunity Portfolio – What can be done to improve the performance of the Horizon 2 Opportunity Portfolio, bridging the gap between the well-exercised processes of Horizon 3 Ideation (H3: 5+ years) portfolio and Horizon 1 Stage-Gate (H1: 1-2 years) project portfolio?
Kick off webinar:  Wednesday May 20, 1 – 2pm EDT; Register
Talent Management for Corporate Innovation Specialists – What are best practices associated with developing innovation talent that helps create new business platforms based on novel technologies? 
Kick off webinar: Thursday, April 9 12:00-1:00pm EDT; Register
Platform Strategies for Incumbent Organizations – Benchmarking opportunity:  How do legacy companies perceive the threat of digital platforms to their business models and how they are responding to it by engaging in business model innovation? 
Kick off webinar:  Tuesday, April 14, 12-1pm EDT; Register
If you are interested in a project, but aren’t able to join the webinar, please email Lee Green at green@iriweb.org for more information.

Digitalization & Covid-19 Discussion Group

We will hold weekly 30 minute virtual check-ins for the next three weeks to discuss how COVID-19 is impacting digitalization.  Here is the agenda for our first discussion:

  • How have you used your digital transformation to be better prepared for the current environment?
  • Have you had any surprises as to tools that have been used in new and better ways?
  • How is digital transformation in your organization being changed?
  • Many companies are using the current situation as an opportunity for training and developing key skill sets.  Are others doing this?  If so, how?  (e.g. preparing now for future experiments – building infrastructure, cleaning up data)

These calls will take place on Fridays at 11am ET starting on April 17Register here.  (Note:  to keep these as a productive discussion, we will be limiting registration to 30 people.)


USG & Digitalization: Thought Leader Interview this Thursday

Through the DXC, participants have the chance to attend and ask questions in live interviews with diverse industry thought leaders. This Thursday, April 16 at 12 PM (ET), IRI’s Lee Green will interview key members of USG’s digital team: Sam Immordino, Director of Futuring & Digital Innovation; and Jeff White, Vice President of Marketing.  They will tackle key issues around USG’s successes and challenges in moving forward with digitalization and the lesson they’ve learned that can help others on their journey. Register.


Shaping Innovation Leaders

May 30-June 5, 2020

Hosted by Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management

Managers in today’s competitive R&D marketplace rely on enhanced business skills to improve their company’s competitive edge. IRI, in partnership with the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, specifically designed Shaping Innovation Leaders, May 30-June 5, 2020 at Northwestern's Allen Center, to meet the needs of demanding leadership roles in promising, mid-level managers in research, development and engineering. The program’s curriculum is designed by Kellogg, in cooperation with senior R&D executives of IRI Member Organizations. This course will equip you with best practices and methods to address challenges in leading innovation teams, and the skills to boost your team's performance.

For more information about discounts for IRI member companies and how to register, please email Gabriella Herzberg.


Building a Capability for Breakthrough Innovation throughout Your Organization

June 9-10, 2020

Hosted by Babson College

Is your company being threatened by disruption? Most companies today must develop continuous flows of innovation in order to create new product categories, find new ways to use their existing products, and stay relevant. Attend Building a Capability for Breakthrough Innovation, a two-day Babson Executive Education program for leaders, managers, teams, and innovators to develop an action plan for generating long-term revenue from breakthrough innovations. Get a 10% discount using the code BEE-IRI when you register.