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The Role of Innovation: A Macro Economic View

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Many see the onset of summer as a time to rest and relax. But, summer happens to be one of my favorite seasons. Rather than rest and relax, I find the warmer weather brings renewed energy. Over the past few weeks I've expended energy reading more, exploring ideas, trying to take up running (LOL!), and huddling up with TED. On a recent visit, I re-watched Macroeconomist, Robert J. Gordon's, The Death of Innovation, the End of Growth.

The first time I watched the talk, I remember thinking Gordon held a pessimistic view of innovation. But, on second glance, I believe Gordon presents us with a number of opportunities to apply innovation to the very headwinds that plague us.

In the talk, Gordon presents four headwinds: demographics (retirement of baby boomers and prime age adult males dropping out of the workforce), education (cost inflation) debt (growing U.S. debt as a share of GDP), and inequality (slow growth rate of the bottom 99% of the income distribution). Gordon's premise is that innovation needs to be more powerful than it has been in the last 150 years in order to bring about economic growth.

Who's ready to take on innovation in the areas of workforce dropout, the cost of education, balancing debt, and tackling inequality? It certainly appears that we need to address these challenges - particularly if Gordon's macroeconomic forecast is accurate.

Feel free to comment or tweet @alicarnold with ideas or examples.

Alicia Arnold holds
a Master of Science in Creativity, Innovation and Change Leadership
from the International Center for Studies in Creativity at Buffalo State
College and an M.B.A in Marketing from Bentley University. She enjoys
writing about creativity and innovation and is published with Bloomberg
Businessweek, the Huffington Post, The National Association of Gifted
Children, and iMedia Connection. In her role as an award winning,
digital marketer, she uses her passion for creativity and innovation to
develop breakthrough digital and social experiences.

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