Proud to be a member of London & Partners Open Innovation Fellowship

I love London and always have. Growing up in Essex, going into the city was always a highlight of the calendar. A place where everything was bigger and brighter; where there was always something new to explore; and where so many diverse experiences were just around the corner from each other.

I’ve now lived and worked in London for close to 20 years. I’ve been really lucky that a lot of my work at H+K has been centred around the capital; its culture and its communities. My clients have included the London Eye and Westfield. I’ve worked with London Fashion Week and on London 2012. And through partnering with adidas’ London newsroom for eight years, I’ve maintained a firm eye on the ever-evolving culture of the city, creating new ways to connect and drive conversation within it. I have long been inspired by the creativity and constant innovation in the city – of which diversity of thought and successful collaboration are critical.

So, I’m sure you can imagine my pride to secure a space in London & Partners inaugural Open Innovation Fellowship, supported by the Mayor of London. The fellowship has been created to help support the broader ambition of making London an inclusive and open city for innovation. And when we consider the current challenges faced by the city, this agenda has never felt more important. The programme aims to enhance the thinking of members, providing valuable tools and references to take back into their organisations; create a powerful network of leaders and collaborators from different corners of London industry; use the diverse talent within the group to speculate on new solutions for the city.

The fellowship was founded on the core belief that more effective, open innovation means greater connections are made and those connections are more likely to lead to successful, scalable innovation and change. That more inclusive thinking means the best innovators have opportunities to collaborate and make a genuine difference, regardless of who they are or their background.

At H+K we have an established principle of Open Innovation, that innovation is the responsibility of each and every one of us; that we can all shape the future of the agency and create the company we want to part of. We are committed to a culture and infrastructure that is open and inclusive, where all voices should and can be heard. We have a number of key initiatives to support this –  EquALL, our core D+I platform, the Futures Council, a junior advisory board, a partnership with Creative Access to name a few – however I definitely left the first fellowship session inspired for how we can push this further; specifically our collaboration with the outside world. How can we further open our doors to enable different ideas into the agency…and importantly collaborate with external partners to create new solutions for the industry and craft at large. If open innovation generates, disseminates and absorbs the inflows and outflows of knowledge across an organisation’s boundaries, how are we set up to fully maximize the opportunity?

It’s early on the journey. I plan to share more detail on key topics from the programme in due course. Like the principle of the fellowship, I want to be open, receptive to different opinions, and sharing as much as I can. I hope you’ll find it interesting, and if you want to discuss or collaborate on any of the topics, please do get in touch!

I thought I would just leave this introductory post with the key principles of open innovation that were shared in the fellowship’s first session; principles that have already inspired me to push my thinking and approach to innovation:


Closed Innovation Principles Open Innovation Principles
The smartest people in the field work for us Most of the smartest people work someplace else


To profit from innovation, we must discover, develop and ship/deliver it ourselves External innovation can help create value, while internal R&D and a business model are needed to claim a portion of that value


If we discover it ourselves we will get it to market first We don’t have to originate the research in order to profit from it


If we are the first to commercialise it, we win Building a better business model is better than getting to market first


If we create the most and best ideas in the industry, we win If we make the best use of internal and external ideas, we win


We should control our IP, SO that our competitors don’t profit from our ideas We should profit from others’ use of our IP, and we should buy others’ IP when it advances our own business


To find out more about the Open Innovation Fellowship, read here.