Attune to the unusual!

Last week during the 48th World Economic Forum in Davos-Klosters in Switzerland there was plenty of attention for the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. In specific there was a call for accelerating innovation to become more sustainable, because at the current pace of innovation today we will not achieve these goals in time.

Most eco-innovations are still so called incremental innovations, where small improvements are being made. The cumulative effect of these incremental eco-innovations can be significant, however they do not match the urgency of the UN 2030 goal. Even if the incremental innovation were to speed up this is not probable. Radical innovations, which are more rare, need to accelerate as well.

In order to increase the innovation speed, the World Economic Forum launched a new platform to connect start-ups with multinational businesses, investors, universities and governments. This new inititative will definitely bare fruit and we can learn from the outcome. But perhaps we can learn also from others who have been successful in being creative.

In the Science News edition of next week there is an interesting article about Jazz improvisers. It seems that Jazz artists get a creative boost while improvising, as their brains quickly embrace surprises such as unexpected riffs and unusual chords. Classical musicians and non-musicians do not engage so easy with surprising music as Jazz improvisers do.

So if we want to increase our own creative potential we could learn from Jazz improvisors to be more receptive to the unexpected. Boosting creativity and innovation can be the result of embracing surprises and improvise to a new world.

Have fun!

Norbert Bol


Price, K. (2018), Jazz improvisers score high on creativity, Science News, Vol. 193, No. 2, February 3, 2018, p. 5.

Photo by readerwalker on / CC BY-NC-SA

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