Simulating Innovation
Show Less

Simulating Innovation

Computer-based Tools for Rethinking Innovation

Christopher Watts and Nigel Gilbert

Christopher Watts and Nigel Gilbert explore the generation, diffusion and impact of innovations, which can now be studied using computer simulations.
Buy Book in Print
Show Summary Details
You do not have access to this content

Chapter 4: Explore and exploit

Computer-based Tools for Rethinking Innovation

Christopher Watts and Nigel Gilbert


At the end of the previous chapter a model was discussed in which agents needed the diffusion of new information for a purpose: keeping track of their environment. This was a task which they could perform better collectively, via their social network, than they could if they acted independently. But they were vulnerable to herd behaviour, collective mistakes that individuals struggled to correct. This chapter continues the themes of innovation being useful for some task or end, and of agentsí behavioural practices and social network structure having an effect on their ability to perform that task. In particular, performance depends on a balance between exploring new ideas, or generating innovations, and exploiting innovations already found, diffusing them to others. The next chapter will cover models of scientists exploring and exploiting ideas through academic publications. This chapter examines the use of simulation models of the ways in which organisations and the people working in them innovate in their day-to-day activities, what are called models of organisational learning.

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.

Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Further information

or login to access all content.