Disrupting Christensen’s theory of “disruptive innovation”

newyorker-disruptionSeems like Clayton Christensen’s theory of Disruptive Innovation, which has been all the rage in the innovation world since his publication of The Innovator’s Dilemma in 1997, is facing some challenge amongst some leading thinkers in the space.

In a recent article in the New Yorker, Jill Lepore embarks on one of the first thorough criticisms of disruptive innovation. Practitioner Peter Jones’ follows-up on this with a post in which he does not refute Christensen’s theory, which certainly has its merit, but rather expounds upon why the dogged focus on disruption in many sectors has its downsides.

Finally, check out the rebuttal of Jill Lepore’s position by Clark Gilbert in a Forbes column, a former student of Christensen’s. A quick search for Lepore name brings up many other responses to her challenge – a fact that, in my perspective, means that she’s hit a nerve. Drama!

(image credit: The New Yorker.)


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