I’m a one-trick pony on Government innovation in that I always go on about the need for more adoption of Cloud Computing.
This is for good reason I believe. Canada has a renowned ‘Innovation Gap’, showing a decline in many aspects of national innovation while sustaining an economy through a dependence natural resource businesses, an unsustainable strategy and an unpleasant future for Canada’s grand-children.
Technology is key to turning this around, as it directly drives the knowledge work productivity that will address this issue. However as the World Economic Forum reports Canada continues to slip in their adoption of new ICT. This translates into less competitive intensity, less R&D to fuel exportable product innovation, and so forth.
This corresponds with my own direct experiences, where there is less appetite for adoption of Cloud Computing in Canada, (“let’s wait and see”) and also less willingness to fund new ventures in this sector (“ooh too risky”).
The challenge of course is that other nations aren’t as hesitant, they’re embracing the Cloud to launch new products and businesses, to Innovate!
Canada will continue to slip down this greasy pole until political leadership emerges that takes the situation in hand, defines and leads the required Digital Innovation strategy.
Innovation and the Cloud
To help I have worked with IT World Canada to produce this great looking introductory overview to the Cloud for CIO’s in Canada. As you’ll see my piece (on page 8 ) has little to do with Cloud technologies and everything to do with re-inventing the public sector to become more innovative, leveraging the Cloud as the platform and catalyst to do so.
The guide is sponsored by Microsoft, who also sponsored another similar article published in this months Harvard Business Review, entitled ‘Innovation and the Cloud’ – You can read it online here.
Written by Michael Schrage, author of Serious Play, he also highlights that the biggest benefits of Cloud computing lie not in the IT efficiencies most people talk about, but rather in how it enables “Accordion Innovation” – The ability to more easily experiment with new ideas, to try them out and flex up and down with the underlying infrastructure to enable this dynamic flexibility.
This is why Open Government and Cloud Computing are the two most important topics for Governments to embrace today, especially in Canada. There is a national imperative to foster more innovation, and key to this is more Open Innovation, and the new IT infrastructure that can enable it.
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