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Everyone agrees innovation is desirable but few agree on its exact definition, especially in a business context. But as companies chase it and governments attempt to promote it, the need to define innovation and, in particular, measure it has become increasingly pressing.

There was a time when expenditure on research and development was the principal measure of innovation. Now it's just a part of the way the importance of groundbreaking progress is gauged. Many milestones come not from science laboratories, but from new goods and services, changes in management organization and the novel use of technologies.

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