Valdis Krebs in BWeek Innovation article

Submitted by Ed Morrison on Sat, 02/18/2006 - 08:40.

The latest issue of Business Week highlights social network analysis and points to the work of our colleague Valdis Krebs. Read more.  As we have been saying for some time, Valdis (a CSU grad) is an international expert on a remarkably important field for Northeast Ohio: innovation.

Remarkably, while I was at REI, we became the first customer in Northeast Ohio to buy Valdis' software, InFlow. Slow adoption of innovation comes from cognitive blind spots -- what we do not see -- and poor civic behavior that erodes trust and disrupts networks.

Through his work in social network analysis, Valdis has been teaching us how networks form, what are the good characteristics of networks, what behaviors build networks, and how best to ignore bad behavior.

Valdis is working with Holly Harlan at E4S , and we will be using his insights as we begin implementing the County's economic development action plan. The plan follows the Open Source Economic Development model which Valdis is helping us build. Specifically, we are mapping North Coast clusters and new innovation zones. You can see the emerging network in Midtown by visiting either Real NEO or Midtown Wednesday blog:

You can download the County action plan -- which outlines clusters and zones -- from this page.

Valdis, Jack Ricchuito, June Holley and I will be teaching a two day seminar on Open Source Economic Development at Baldwin Wallace on March 27 and 28. More details later.

Last week, I was in Oklahoma City, where I-Open will be working to build the innovation and entrepreneurship strategy for that region. We used Valdis' software to illustrate how open networks of collaboration -- with colleges and universities embedded in these networks -- form the basis of a regional innovation strategy.

We are all honored to be working with Valdis.

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Mapping NEO... expanding

Ed - thanks so much for pointing this out, and I'm sure there will be lots of excitement around the seminar.


In the mean time, it seems there are lots of network mapping initiatives under way (like there are many GIS initiatives) and it would be great if we could at least map the mapping efforts, if not find a way to derive common understandings from any complimentary efforts.


If Holly Harlan/E4S and David Beach/EcoCity are each mapping comparable things, and that compliments what you are doing, and the mapping CAAO plans to do in the regional African American community, can't we harvest come collective wisdom? I'll represent the realneo network in planning these mapping efforts, and welcome all others. Show your interest with comments here.

I think this is a great

I think this is a great idea, but I defer to Valdis on how difficult it would be to pull this off.

I'll write him and ask. I think we need to be moving these networking efforts together on a regular basis. That speaks to an event -- perhaps coordinated with some other event (Ingenuity Festival?), at which we could all examine these maps together.



When you come up with the algorithm which proves that decent civic behavior rewards the actor in dollars, then network mapping will really take off (and decent behavior too). 

I am of the opinion that Enron, World Comm, Global Crossing, etc,etc, are the exception, not the rule, but it would be nice to have math behind me. 

Seriously, why can't a formula prove the golden rule?

From what I read, Steven Wolfram, the guy behind Mathimatica, is working on this social/math problem.

Next Nobel?