Chapter 5 Moving towards innovation through withdrawal: the neglect of destruction
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Innovation scholars and dominant discourses relegate destruction and withdrawal as being secondary, collateral or unavoidable aspects of innovation processes. The chapter qualifies these dominant thoughts on innovation, be they classical or contemporary, and identifies destruction, exnovation and withdrawal as relevant phenomena. It uses a case study on the withdrawal of tilling in agriculture to propose an alternative way of thinking about innovation, one whereby withdrawal is not an evidence phenomenon but a complex process, engaging strategic thinking and controversies, as well as creativity, invention and innovation. The chapter suggests that innovation through withdrawal is a growing phenomenon requiring empirical and theoretical investigations. It also suggests that disciplinary bias, cultural values and ideology explain the neglect of destruction or withdrawal in discourses and theories about innovation.

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