3 min read ⌚
The Making of Young People Who Will Change the World
Innovation can be used everywhere. However, major changes need to happen before people capable of changing the world can actually do it.
About Tony Wagner
Tony Wagner is a writer and an Innovation Education Fellow at Harvard’s Technology & Entrepreneurship Center.
“Creating Innovators Summary”
Innovation is used in each area and process in life in which people use creativity to solve issues and make improvements.
Changes made to existing ideas, technologies, products, and services can be either incremental or disruptive, depending on the level of transformations they introduce.
In any case, anyone can be innovative – innovation only asks for critical thinking and develop problem-solving abilities.
It also requires teamwork, since many innovations need to happen across disciplinary boundaries.
However, although that innovation is possible, it seems that not many people are practicing it. The problem of it lies in how our society is functioning: the families and the educational system.
We will explain the changes needed to happen in order to fuel innovation in the key lessons below. And now, we will take a quick look at the three types of innovators that society needs:
First, the world needs STEM Innovators. STEM innovators are people who work in mathematics, technology, engineering, and science.
Now, you may be thinking that the emphasis has been on these fields for a number of years, but colleges have been putting too much focus on academic research and reward those who publish through the traditional channels and areas.
Traditional science classes do not help to nurture the culture of innovation in any way.
Next, we need Social Innovators, who cover an opposite array of interests than STEM innovators.
These innovators come from different liberal backgrounds and are striving to change the world for the better and fight the injustices that happen. They do not innovate things, like STEM innovators do, but change the actual world and society.
Finally, Educational Innovators are needed to prepare the “soil” for the future generations.
In other words, the educational system exists to pass on the gathered knowledge on the next generations, and not to create and induce new knowledge.
However, this transmission of facts only crushes students’ thirst for knowledge and curiosity.
Educational innovators must think of a way to change the system in order to create generations with actual critical thinking and the problem-solving world which students can readily use in the real world.
Now, let’s move on to the areas that need to change so these types of innovators can come into existence.
Key Lessons from “Creating Innovators”
1. Innovative Universities
2. Innovative Parenting
3. Workplace Innovation
As we already said, the educational system is dated.
Especially colleges, which more and more prove to be expensive and not effective enough.
Colleges need to change: become more affordable and offer education that crosses disciplinary boundaries.
Parents are the pillars on which children build their future selves.
Hence, parents should make children comfortable with creativity and innovation. They can do this by encouraging their interests, and allowing for some play time which fuels the imagination.
Finally, the workplace needs to be open to welcome these much-needed innovators.
Managers need to stop chasing for measurable results like efficiency and create a climate in which people feel comfortable being creative and innovative.
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