Skip to Main Content (Press Enter) Toggle side nav
The Innovation Paradox by Tony Davila and Marc Epstein

The Innovation Paradox

Best Seller
The Innovation Paradox by Tony Davila and Marc Epstein
Hardcover $29.95
Jun 30, 2014 | ISBN 9781609945534

Also available from:

  • Jun 30, 2014 | ISBN 9781609945534

    Also available from:

*This title is not eligible for purchase to earn points nor for redemption with your code in the Reader Rewards program

Product Details


“Original and thoroughly researched, but pragmatic and accessible, this book will be a vital resource for executives, scholars, and even startups looking to keep the breakthrough ideas coming.”
—Soumitra Dutta, Dean, Johnson Graduate School of Management, Cornell University

“Davila and Epstein have crushed the prevailing mindset that business units, operational excellence, and traditional approaches to innovation can deliver sustained growth. Building and balancing the traditional and startup operating models is the top item for every company’s growth agenda.”
—Robert Shelton, coauthor of Making Innovation Work and a World Economic Forum Innovation Champion

“Davila and Epstein solve the perennial mystery that has puzzled many corporate leaders: what are the forces inside large companies that prevent them from developing breakthrough innovations? This book provides an insightful framework for diagnosing those forces and tools for overcoming organizational inertia to implement processes that result in breakthroughs.”
—Steven C. Currall, Dean and Professor of Management, Graduate School of Management, University of California, Davis, and coauthor of Organized Innovation

The Innovation Paradox sheds light on how large corporations can successfully innovate while creating shareholder value. It informs the reader on how different corporate cultures and management styles play a key role in being successful at different points of the innovation spectrum.”
—Laizer Kornwasser, Company Group Chairman, Valeant Pharmaceuticals

“Many organizations are structurally committed to the status quo. Davila and Epstein offer practical ideas to overcome this challenge while preserving existing success.”
—Srikant Datar, Arthur Lowes Dickinson Professor, Harvard Business School

“In boardrooms, one of the most critical discussions centers around innovation and how to leverage creativity in the marketplace—faster and better than in the past. The Innovation Paradox demonstrates how to overcome obstacles and create breakthrough innovation.”
—Blythe McGarvie, member of the board of directors of Accenture, Viacom, LKQ Corporation, and Sonoco

“Davila and Epstein have done it again. After their very successful first book (coauthored with Rob Shelton), Making Innovation Work, they introduce the insightful concept of the Startup Corporation, which combines two seemingly contradictory mindsets and skillsets: the ability of startups to create new business opportunities and the disciplined execution of large corporations to achieve profitable growth. This combination is required if the corporation is to develop the capability for continuously generating innovations. Davila and Epstein take the reader through a framework for creating the Startup Corporation that addresses both tangible factors such as strategy, systems, and incentives and intangible ones such as organizational culture and leadership style. The book is practical and engaging and provides numerous tools for creating an innovative organization.”
—S. Ramakrishna Velamuri, Professor of Entrepreneurship and Department Chair (Strategy and Entrepreneurship), China Europe International Business School

“Written by world-class authorities on innovation, product development, and startup life cycles, this book is a must-read for any entrepreneur. As CEO of a venture-backed startup, I’ve learned an immense amount from it.”
—Sunil Rajaraman, CEO,

“Breakthrough innovation is no longer a mystery—Davila and Epstein have broken the code. Now even the most established organization can come up with disruptive products and services.” 
—Klaus Peter Müller, Principal, Roland Berger Strategy Consultants GmbH, Germany

“Davila and Epstein have done impressive research to uncover the hidden impediments to innovation present in most established organizations. Their recommendations for overcoming those impediments while preserving existing success are well thought out and very practical.”
—Gloria Perrier-Châtelain, Senior Global Director, Digital Marketing Strategy, and Partner, SAP, France

“For the first time, Davila and Epstein offer a solution to the ‘startup envy’ experienced by so many organizations. They show that, with the right adjustments, innovations can flow from high-rises as well as from garages.”
—Bence Andras, Partner, Proventus AG, Switzerland

Table Of Contents

1. What is the Innovation Paradox?
1.1 Incremental and Breakthrough Innovation
1.2 Top-Down and Bottom-Up Innovation
1.3 Managing for Strategic Discoveries
1.4 The Startup Corporation
1.5 The Truth About the Innovation Paradox
2. The Benefits and Limits of the Business Unit
2.1 The Benefits of Business Units
2.2 The Limits of Business Units
2.3 Business Units, Functional Structure, and Breakthrough Innovation
3. The Success of Startups
3.1 Copy and Combine from Others
3.2 Learn as Quickly and as Cheaply as Possible
3.3 Manage Risk Effectively
3.4 Govern Transparently
3.5 Execute
3.6 Learning From the Activities of Startup Innovation
3.7 Learning from the Creation of Science
4. The Startup Corporation: The New Kid on the Block
4.1 Beyond the Success of Startups
4.2 Adopting the Strengths of Startups
4.3 Stage One: Inspire
4.4 Stage Two: Attract
4.5 Stage Three: Combine
4.6 Stage Four: Learn
4.7 Stage Five: Leverage
4.8 Stage Six: Integrate
5. Implementing the Startup Corporation
5.1 Solutions for Inspiring
5.2 Solutions for Attracting
5.3 Solutions for Combining
5.4 Solutions for Learning
5.5 Solutions for Leveraging
5.6 Solutions for Integrating
6. Overcoming the Innovation Paradox: Designing the Startup Corporation
6.1 Managing Breakthrough Innovation Projects
6.2 Inspiring the Startup Corporation
6.3 Attracting Ideas into the Startup Corporation
6.4 Combining the Pieces of the Startup Corporation
6.5 Learning for Strategic Discoveries
6.6 Leveraging Strategic Discoveries
6.7 Integrating Strategic Discoveries
7. Innovative Cultures
7.1 Changing the Culture of an Organization
7.2 Employee Abilities
7.3 Supporting Innovation Activities
7.4 Goals and Evaluation
7.5. Role Models and Structures
7.6 Resources, Culture, and Innovation
8. Leading for Breakthrough Innovation
8.1 The Innovation Strategist
8.2 The Innovation Sponsor
8.3 The Innovation Architect
8.4 The Innovation Evangelist
8.5 Personal Characteristics of Innovative leaders
9. Hard Foundations: Strategy, Incentives, and Management Systems
9.1 Strategies for Breakthrough Innovation
9.2 Incentives for Breakthrough innovation
9.3 Management Systems for Breakthrough innovation
10. Wrapping up
About the Authors

Be the first to know!
And go from well-read to best read with book recs, deals and more in your inbox every week.
And go from well-read to best read with book recs, deals and more in your inbox every week.
By clicking SIGN UP, I acknowledge that I have read and agree to Penguin Random House’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.
Something awesome is on its way.
Back to Top