Disputing the Theory Behind Disruptive Innovation

DISRUPTING DISRUPTION: Ever since Clayton Christensen's "disruptive innovation" theory hit mainstream, writes Jill Lepore in The New Yorker, "everyone is either disrupting or being disrupted. There are disruption consultants, disruption conferences, and disruption seminars." She's tired of the word, and isn't afraid to throw punches at the "gospel of innovation" and startup culture. Some of her critiques of the evidence behind the theory are well-founded; others, however, seem an overreach. Says Slate's Will Oremus: "Lepore’s cherry-picked counterexamples don’t definitively overthrow Christensen’s theory any more than his own cherry-picked examples definitively prove it."

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