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Creativity, innovation, invention. Dependencies and differences - I'm Inno! -
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The dependency between innovation, invention and creativity.

Creativity, Invention, innovation

Are creativity and innovation the same thing?
Not once have I heard discussions concerning this topic and I strongly believe that, as long as you’re not Schumpeter or Kotler, you shouldn’t discuss it at all 😉
Let’s trust authoritites, then. 

Even though Philip Kotler is one of the biggest experts in the field of marketing, the definition he stated just wasn’t accepted. What’s important – as far as I’m concerned he’s the only representative of such opinion.
It clashes with every other definition that can be found in literature. 


Joseph Schumpeter draws a clear line between innovation and invention. These are two separate concepts. These two terms cannot be used interchangeably, as invention is only the unused idea of na inventor. However, considering the most common definitions of innovation, it can be seen that their common element is the need to put the invention into practice.

Only Philip Kotler stated that

idea = innovation

  • „Innovation is any good, service or idea, that are considered by someone as something new. ”

Even though innovation and invention are being used as synonims, there is one significant difference between them.
Innovation is a result of a human brain creativity.
Creativity is an essential tool that enables us to put the innovation into practice. Creative people or agencies build the favourable environment to create innovations.
This is exactly how outstading ideas and progress are made.

This incredible cognitive ability foster non-standard, customized solutions, thanks to the „exploratory competencies”.

According to the research conducted by J.H Dyer managers’ creativity helps them stand out with extraordinary abilities of:

  • Making associations
  • Experimenting
  • Observing
  • Networking
  • Asking provocative questions

Those who use these abilities during their creative investigations, activate two cerebral hemispheres at the same sime. Both right (responsible for intuitive and abstract thinking) and left (responsible for logical and analytical part of this process). It helps within the process of building new ideas that question settled standards and common knowledge. 

Bettina von Stamm, in her research, noted the same competencies of creative people. She assumed that creative individuals affect innovations in the good way, due to the:

  • The ability to formulate new issues and ways of solving them. 
  • The ability to transfer the knowledge into other areas of business activity. 

Creativity is told to be a talent.
Suprisignly, there are theories that creativity is also an ability that we all can learn. There is plenty of factors and incentives that influence and stimulate your brain. Creativity is the condition to start the first stage of innovation production, BUT also it matters during the next steps as well. It enables us to realise our tasks more effectively and get rid of problems at a minimal cost. In current economy creativity matters – enterpreneurs strives for this trait while searching for the best workers. So, the high level of creativity must be maintained within an organization, as it’s foster the creation of new ideas, new products and new brands, and finally it can be the beginning of a
game-changing innovation.  


Read also:


  • J.H. Dyer, H.B. Gregersen, C.M. Christensen: The innovator’s DNA. “Harvard Business Review” December 2009 s. 61-68
  • B. von Stamm: Managing Innovation, Design Creativity, Chichester: John Wiley & Sons 2003 s. 8
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