Kiho Sohn, Chief Knowledge Officer for Pratt Whitney Rocketdyne raised an interesting question: why, at KM conferences, do we talk about innovation, but at innovation conferences there’s no mention of KM? Hm….. at PWR the expertise is in-house — not too many other companies are designing rocket engines.  So they’ve concentrated on helping employees generate ideas that lead to solutions — and out of this they’ve developed many new patents, using the TRIZ method within a 2 day innovation workshop.

TRIZ is founded by a Russian scientist — the practitioners of TRIZ will say it’s the greatest method out there. It relies on a semantics-based technology which has the logic built in.  While listening to Kiho, I checked out TRIZ on wikipedia – TRIZ is the theory of solving inventor’s problems” or “The theory of inventor’s problem solving”. It was developed by a Soviet engineer and researcher Genrich Altshuller and his colleagues starting in 1946. It has been evolving ever since.

Interesting – I’m going to follow-up with Kiho after today’s sessions to get a better understanding.

Kiho Sohn overview of innovation process at KMWorld 2009