The Meanings of "Innovation" in Theological Libraries Bold Ideas of Empty Promises?

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Anthony J Elia
Kris Veldheer
Bob Turner


     Part 1:  Examining the “Theological-Industrial-Complex”


The use of the term innovation in recent years has been widely debated, but also widely used in theological education.  The question we are asking is whether innovation is inherently a set of “bold ideas” or merely “empty promises,” based on a systematic need to change environments for the sake of change, rather than the sake of need.  In the first presentation, we will discuss the history of the term “innovation,” why it has become tied to technology, and what the underpinning power-structure of the “theological-industrial-complex” is and has to do with innovation in our theological institutions.

     Part 2:  How Do We Talk About Innovation?


            This was a presentation in three parts with the second part being about how do we talk about innovation.  Several points were raised including the language of innovation and the myths of innovation.  Finally, based on an article by Girish Rishi, three paths to innovation were highlighted along with a number of lessons to be implemented as well.

     Part 3:  Culture of Innovation or Innovation of Culture?


When we think of innovation we often associate the word with digital technology, such as software, apps, and electronic books. Yet our view of innovation should not be limited to the stuff that we create, or that others create for us. Instead, we can think of innovation as the way that we creatively understand and apply our strengths to our workplaces. In this paper I will argue that the creative use of our strengths, not the total remaking of our libraries, is the best way to adapt to the constant changes in our field and world.

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