Open Innovation in Canada: Reinventing Collaboration

Task Force: Simon Gamache, Sara-Christine Gemson, Youmani Jérôme Lankoandé, Jonathan Plamondon, Jane Thornton

Advisor: André Juneau

With innovation happening at an ever-increasing pace, the best companies recognise that they can no longer depend solely on internal resources to be at the cutting edge. Collaboration with outside partners, big and small, is essential to develop new products and services, as well as to find new ways of doing business. Yet many Canadian companies are lagging in the innovation race because they are not adopting a collaborative approach.

How can we facilitate transfers of expertise between organisations, which would not traditionally partner with each other? How can Canadian innovators work together to build on each others’ strengths?

One solution is Open Innovation: a collaborative strategy which allows the transfer of knowledge and expertise, both intra- and intersectorally, between different companies and organizations.

Federal and provincial governments must act boldly to create the right environment for open innovation to occur. This requires eliminating misconceptions about open innovation through information; providing the right support system, in the form of advice and money, so that partnerships may be established; and ensuring that the intellectual property regime facilitates and protects collaboration.

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