All 4 entries tagged Innovation

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October 29, 2012

Innovation Programme – 25th October 2012

Writing about web page

We were delighted to welcome 35 West Midlands SMEs to the new International Institute for Product and Service Innovation last week.

We ran sessions about the importance of people, materials and digital in regards to creating innovative products and services. We also had the support of Withers & Rogers to talk to SMEs about IP and some tax relief available for innovation activity.

IIPSI Networking Next Stop - IIPSIIIPSI Autumnal View

We informed businesses about the funded support we can offer. We will be running a number of workshop days in the next two months for SMEs to come in and learn more about how people, materials and digital can be used to help them grow and develop. The first is on 15th November. Visit our EventBrite page to find out more.

We also offer customised company projects for those SMEs that might have an in depth project they need to take forward and support SMEs who might want to undertake research and development activity with us.

We can also help SMEs get access to graduates and students if they are looking to recruit or get extra resource to work on projects.

The team here enjoyed meeting lots of new faces and are excited by the prospect of new projects. Do get in touch with us if you would like to talk any ideas through.

February 10, 2012

Polymer Innovation – What Does it Mean to You and Your Business?

The Polymer Innovation part of the IIPSI project is tasked with helping West Midlands based SMEs to grow by assisting them to develop and introduce innovative polymer products. This is a huge research area with new materials and processes appearing all the time, so the potential range of projects we can carry out with companies is very broad. Current research that we are working on includes:

  • Additive Manufacturing – building plastic parts a layer at a time using printing techniques
  • Plastic electronics – embedding functionality such as lighting into plastic parts
  • Micromoulding – making tiny parts using specialist injection moulding equipment
  • Sustainable polymers and composites – ‘green’ materials with lower environmental impact

…but now is your chance to have your say and ensure that the IIPSI provides the assistance that you need!

We’d love to hear any comments and suggestions on the innovative uses of polymers you’d like to develop within your business. Please feel free to comment below or to contact one of the SME team by email or on Twitter @WMGSME.

February 08, 2012

IIPSI Images

The IIPSI (International Institute for Product and Service Innovation) is continuing to grow in size and stature. I came across a beautiful image on Flickr recently thanks to Mistdog ( If anyone else has any images that they want to share, then please get in touch with us via the blog.

IIPSI in winter sunshine

January 31, 2012

What is Experience Led Innovation?

Writing about What is Experience Led Innovation? from Experience Led Innovation at WMG

My colleague Carolyn Parkinson has written a good post to break down and explain what we mean by Experience Led Innovation. This is a big area of expertise for WMG, and will feature in our new funded project for SMEs running out of the International Institute for Product and Service Innovation. See below Carolyn's post.

"What is Experience Led Innovation?

Is this something new? Or a new way of saying something old? Why do we need to know about it?

Let’s start by talking about what we mean by this. Experience Led Innovation (ELI) is an approach to innovating which seeks to put the user’s experience at the centre of the process for all types of product and service innovation. Experience Led Innovation pulls together a number of approaches to innovating, including human factors engineering, participatory design, and experiential engineering.

Previous terminology which has been used includes User-Focussed Design, but personally I find this term somewhat limiting. Very often there is not one individual who represents the target of the innovation - but picturing this individual is a technique often encouraged in design and marketing contexts. A more rich and informative source of input for the innovation process is to better understand the experience of the users.

Why is this distinction important? People behave in unpredictable ways, and often do not interact with a product, service or environment in a logical or expected way. They have emotional responses to using products and environments. Look, sound, and feel all influence the way users experience and interact with an innovation. Very often their interaction with a product or service takes place at a subconscious level, so asking a user to articulate or predict their needs is less valuable than observing real experiences, emotions, and behaviours as a product is developed.

I am fortunate to work with an excellent team of researchers and knowledge transfer specialists in this area. From our perspective, the key features of Experience Led Innovation include:

  • Taking a cross-discipline approach to understanding user aspect of innovation – at WMG our team includes psychologists, engineers, computer scientists, marketers, ergonomists, and designers.
  • Accepting that technology innovation cannot occur in isolation from understanding real world user behaviour.
  • Participation and engagement with users early and often in the innovation cycle, closing the gap between post market data and early stage design requirements.

There are an enormous number of applications for this approach… but more of that later. In the mean-time find out more about Experience Led Innovation at the following links:

Experience Led Innovation at WMG, University of Warwick:"


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