Innovation is a powerful word. It attracts a premium and denotes superiority, competitive advantage and potential. It is considered universally positive. It is expensive. It is an objective, an approach and a consequence. It is something you can recruit, something you can learn, something you can cultivate and something you can buy. It is a word used in the business world to describe just about any concept, product, service or strategy that is potentially, currently or retrospectively commercially advantageous, but evidently different than competing offerings.
It simultaneously imbues both a sense of mystique and enigma. Mystique, however, is just an exciting word for ambiguity and enigma is mystique with some degree of profundity. Innovation is ambiguous and anything that is ambiguous is economically meaningless.
The purpose of this white paper is to establish a commercially useful definition of innovation in its various forms as something that can be planned, managed and measured. The paper addresses the etymology, history and economic impact of innovation as well as exploring the representation of innovation within the business of banking.
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