Chapter 3: The (not so) small matter of complexity for innovation
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The modern world has been the victim of catastrophic events that change the business and social environment and destroy society’s confidence in stability. Examples are: the global financial crises creating a growth vacuum, consequently filled by more regulation; natural disasters around the globe, with resultant impacts on global businesses because of interrelationships built into global supply chains, multinationals, use of cheap labour in developing economies and so on; the growing lack of natural resources affecting manufacturing and service delivery, and leading to lopsided supply and demand systems; the Industrial Revolution necessary for a service/information economy, but creating substantial waste; the knowledge economy lacking a focus on the elements of linear economics (i.e. land, labour and capital); and developing and transition economies taking over the production that used to be the province of developed economies and refusing to abide by the existing rules of trade and economics. In addition, there seem to be new challenges for the twenty-first century. Meieran (2012) lists the innovation issues to be addressed in the twenty-first century: energy conservation, resource protection, food and water production, preservation and distribution, waste management, genetics and cloning, internet security, sustainable development and globalization, to name but a few.

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