Knott explains innovation research on podcast

  • June 13, 2017
  • By Melody Walker
  • 2 minute read

“Just consider me as Joe bag-of-doughnuts, Joe six pack,” says the self-deprecating host of the American Management Association’s Edgewise podcast, Dave Summers, as he invites Anne Marie Knott to explain her RQ theory to non-academics. The two discuss Knott’s new book, How Innovation Really Works on the podcast.

"How Innovation Really Works"

Knott, professor of strategy at Olin, has developed a tool to measure the relationship between a company’s spending on R&D and how it affects profits and market value. You can think of the tool called “RQ” for Research Quotient as the equivalent of human IQ measurement for companies. If you know a company’s RQ, according to Knott, you can determine its optimal level of  R&D spending, and you can figure out how the change in R&D spending affects profits and market value.

How Innovation Really Works is accessible to “Joe Six Pack” as well as Jane, PhD. Knott says, “Geeks like me can find all the mathematical stuff in Chapter 10. The math is really beautiful.” For those who want to skip the numbers, she recommends chapters 1-8 to understand the the innovation-R&D-GDP connections.

Knott explains on the podcast how she got interested in innovation and R&D while working on missile defense systems at Hughes Aircraft before she entered academics. Her corporate experience fueled her research into why companies like Hughes were failing to maintain their innovative edge by outsourcing R&D.

The Edgewise podcast is produced by the AMA, link here for more info.

Related blog post with video.

About the Author

Melody Walker

Melody Walker

My nickname around the office is "Scoops" because I always have the latest news from the halls of Simon, Starbucks, or the STL startup scene. Thanks to staff and student bloggers, I'm not alone in reporting on the Olin community here on the Blog. Don't be shy, post a comment or send us your story. New bloggers always welcome!

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