While some research seems to point out that men are more innovative than women, the article’s author Adi Gaskell, a member of the ILF Wider Community, points our that such generalisation has a couple of flaws:
- First of all, much of research focuses on the what (products, processes) and where (size of organisations etc.) not the who.
- Secondly, much of research into innovation conducted to date focuses on technical, male dominates industries thus ignoring much of the innovation landscape, and much of where most value is being created today (see research published by the US-based Doblin group)
- Thirdly, perception is everything …Adi quotes a study from 2013 which revealed that women have as many ideas as men, but their ideas are often not taken seriously or listened to with the same attention as those of their male counterparts. It also emerged that these ideas were given less support to bring them to fruition.
- Finally, if we are taking a step back and consider the ability to create conditions in which innovation can thrive – in our view not only the truly critical fact when it comes to innovation, and also the one most important thing leaders should do – we find that women have the edge: responses from over 1,300 participants, mainly from North America reveal that women outperform men along 8 managerial competencies that elicit creativity in subordinates. Here a link to an article Adi wrote on this as well as a link where you can purchase the full article on the study
We thought you might also be interested in a paper reviewing existing research into gender and innovation, published in 2013: click here.