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innovation DAILY

Here we highlight selected innovation related articles from around the world on a daily basis.  These articles related to innovation and funding for innovative companies, and best practices for innovation based economic development.

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2020 INVESTMENTS HIT NEW ANNUAL RECORD DESPITE THE PANDEMIC 

US-based, VC-backed companies raise nearly $130B in 2020, up 14% year-over-year (YoY) from 2019, despite the impacts of Covid-19 around the world.

However, annual deal activity is down YoY, falling to 6,022 deals, a 9% decline from 6,599 in 2019. 

Image: https://www.cbinsights.com

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Amalgam Rx, Inc., a leading Digital Therapeutics and Patient Support company, announces the acquisition of Avhana Health, a privately held clinical decision support (CDS) company, which has deep integrations with the leading electronic health records (EHR). Amalgam Rx will expand Avhana’s CDS tools to multiple therapeutic areas and combine them with other digital solutions to simplify doctors’ workflows.

 

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City street in the evening.

Here on the Review, we have an annual tradition that we look forward to each January. We press pause, pour ourselves a big cup of coffee, and pore over each article we published the previous year, with an eye for the very best pieces of advice that we’re still thinking about, one year on.

Since the Review’s genesis in 2013, we’ve interviewed hundreds of folks who are among the very best at what they do — and 2020 was no exception. We cherish the opportunity to carefully parse through the advice of the experts that were featured on the Review’s digital pages — from repeat successful founders, to events gurus, to top psychologists. (If you’re curious to see how this collection has evolved over time, check out previous editions from 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013.)

 

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In the 2017-2018 academic school year, nearly 342,000 students from the U.S. studied abroad for credit, according to the NAFSA.  However, a clampdown on international travel due to the coronavirus pandemic has left many students canceling plans and scrambling for alternatives to studying abroad for their upcoming semesters. Classes have been canceled and universities are recalling students stranded overseas on lockdown. 

If you planned to study abroad for the new school year but find yourself stuck at home, this guide will give you insight on alternatives to studying abroad during the ongoing pandemic. It will also provide an overview of the best credit cards to use when studying abroad, so you’re ready to save big when the travel ban lifts.

 

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Martin Fritz Huber Outside Online

Around this time last year, in keeping with recent tradition, we reached out to our network of health and fitness experts to forecast some industry trends for 2020. It was December 2019, just as the first documented cases of a new respiratory illness were being recorded in Wuhan, China. We were innocent of the global health cataclysm that was about to transpire, one which would force many of us to reassess what we had long taken for granted. For some, even going outside for a run became a luxury. 

 

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Most experts agree that halting climate change — and the global warming, extreme heat events and stronger storms that come with it — will require the removal of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gasses from the atmosphere. But with humans pumping out an estimated 37 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide annually, current strategies for capturing it seem likely to fall short.

Image: https://scienceblog.com

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As a business adviser, I often see entrepreneurs practicing what Tom Peters calls the “ready-fire-aim” go-to-market strategy to their detriment. Yet even I have been known to recommend that approach, in cases where you have a highly innovative product, speed is of the essence, and no clear existing market is available. In fact, you probably won’t get it right the first time anyway.

Certainly I believe the traditional ready-aim-fire strategy approach works best in most cases, and that should be your default. There is no substitute for talking to customers, analyzing your competition, and honing your solution to meet a target market segment. As a counter, here are some situations where it definitely makes sense to short-circuit the traditional approach:

Image: https://blog.startupprofessionals.com

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Kids playing

For many, mundane workplace practices that were once taken for granted: Commutes, watercooler chitchat, coffee breaks, small talk with the boss. Now, these formerly commonplace activities stir up feelings of nostalgia and a longing for the way things were.

With so much uncertainty in the world, now may seem like an inopportune time to talk about workplace creativity.  Creativity may feel superfluous, but it can actually help us stay sharp and adapt to our ever-changing world. Learning through play helps us to embrace uncertainty around change, provide support in our approaches to creativity, and ultimately, enhance our workplace collaborations and the innovative potential that creative leaders can cultivate.

 

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Illustration by Guy Billout - Cartoon Mountain Climber at the top of a mountain

In the 2019 PwC Global Crisis SurveyPDF, 69 percent of respondents said they expected a global crisis in the next five years, most likely due to a financial meltdown or technology failure. Little did they know how prescient they were. Just nine months after the survey was released, an entirely different and unexpected medical and public health crisis — COVID-19 — has fundamentally altered the world. If driving change in the uncertain and turbulent environment that existed at the beginning of 2020 was a complex challenge, the degree of difficulty has now been ramped up significantly.

Image: Illustration by Guy Billout - https://www.strategy-business.com

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Covid 19 infections

As with the many other questions that still remain about the coronavirus, no one is precisely sure of the answer to one of the key questions: how many people will need to be vaccinated to achieve herd immunity—the threshold at which there are enough people immunized that it indirectly protects the rest of the yet-unvaccinated public—and fully end the pandemic. In December, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Anthony Fauci estimated that the cutoff was at least 75%, and closer to 85%.

 

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Creative with a pencil drawing a picture.

The Covid-19 pandemic has crammed a great deal of pressure into our lives, but it has also created an unprecedented opportunity to revisit our own assumptions about how we should live and work. Managers and leaders have had to balance optimism with realism and find new ways to connect although they manage their employees from afar.

These exaggerated tensions and pressures can be a double-edged sword. Research suggests that whether people struggle or thrive with tensions, or competing demands, largely depends on their mindset. With a paradox mindset, tensions can be transformed into new ideas and improved performance. The paradox mindset suggests an alternative perspective, one in which we accept and learn to live with the tensions associated with competing demands.

 

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