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Nevertheless, for the purposes of this study, it is important to have a clear framework that captures the core of the academic definitions and matches this with the reality of business practices. This is drawn out from the iterate as follows. 2. 1.

1 Diversity Diversity can be defined from a policy and legal perspective across 6 clear demographic strands: gender, age, race & ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion & beliefs, and disability. This demographic and non-cognitive definition has now become broadly accepted as the core legal understanding across the European union.For businesses, large and small across Europe, this deflation Is to greater or lesser extent embraced In their policies and practices dependent on the specific legislation in each country and their own willingness to engage with diversity as an issue in its own right. Many will also add other non-cognitive considerations, most commonly nationality, to this definition. Yet, in understanding the significance of diversity for innovation it is also important to go beyond the purely demographic definition, to get under the surface of this strand specific approach and consider the learned aspects of difference.The learning styles and attributes of Individuals and even communities include different knowledge acquisition, and communication styles, educational history, personal skills, professional abilities and functional expertise. Businesses also recognize this dimension to diversity, particularly in elation to innovation, as for example some will seek to bring together “cross- functional” teams to encourage the generation of new ideas.

In reviewing the literature as well as the policies of successful companies what Is revealed Is a complex Interplay between the different dimensions of diversity as defined above and the understanding of deliverers role in Innovation. While the focus of this study will be on the demographic definition, this is not to the exclusion of the ‘cognitive’/learned dimension. 2. 1. 2 Innovation Innovation, meanwhile, is also a multidimensional term, displaying “subjective” and objective” traits.Subjective traits of innovation Include the processes of creativity and Orlando thinking, the communication of creative and original thinking to others, and the uptake of those ideas by others. Here thinking relates to all areas of company activity, including everyday operations and problems, through the research and development of new or existing products, to the sourcing of new suppliers and expansion into new markets.

Objective traits of innovation include the structures within which such ideas are thought about, transmitted to, and taken up by others, ND the output and outcome In terms of definable benefits.The success that a subjective “raw materials” of innovation – creative thinking by individuals or groups – can be harnessed by the objective structures of innovation. For the purposes of this study, innovation is best defined as the generation and introduction of new ideas, which lead to the development of new products and services, processes, and systems in all areas of business activity. In relation to diversity, then, subjective innovation might be said to stem from the cognitive diversity that visible and non-visible forms of diversity imply.However, the ability of diverse individuals to communicate creative and original thinking to others, and the willingness of those others to listen and respond to such ideas, might be constrained by institutional and non-institutional forms of discrimination, including the degree to which the company has a culture of “inclusion” and the objective structures of organizations within which creative and innovative thinking takes place. As such, any attempt at encouraging “latent” creativity and innovation within and through diverse workforces must be linked with wider management processes and practices in the businesses of themselves.