IT meets KM meets E2.0 meets Innovation in the Boston Subway

Picture 3Yesterday I was preparing for an Innovation Management training session I will be doing later this week. The sponsor, after reviewing my credentials asked “How you make the leap from information and knowledge management to coaching/developing innovation
skills?  … Your background seems to be IT.”

I provided what I hope was not too lengthy a response. In essence it stated that I view Innovation Management as a fully ingrained component of KM, and IT as a strategic facilitator of both. It’s interesting, but to many friends, family and colleagues my background appears disjointed. To me it is completely synergistic and logically intertwined.

Well, this morning I saw an article that pulled it all together.  It seems that the State of Massachusetts’ Executive Office of Transportation (EOT) has initiated what it calls “The Developers Challenge.”   This program facilitates the creation of new applications for public transportation riders, utilizing newly released state-owned data.  Several challenges exist. One for example calls for the creation of a mobile phone/web-based app that makes it easier to navigate the Boston subway system – or “T”.

Eureka I thought, – this is the perfect blend of IT (apps) in the form of Enterprise 2.0 technologies (mashups), in a collaborative and knowledge sharing environment (More E2.0 and KM), being used to foster and drive innovation – in an emergent fashion (again E2.0).  The challenge even leverages one of the basic tenets of KM – Incentivization (the  winner of each challenge gets free T rides for a year.)

To today’s casual user of “apps” it may just seem like a tool – but for me it is my life, my  career, the perfect blend of IT, KM, E2.0, ECM, information management, collaboration, information architecture, findability, taxonomies, user interfaces, process management …

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