The Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention & Innovation
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Lemelson Institute

Places of Invention:
The First Lemelson Institute

Organized by the Jerome and Dorothy Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation

Lemelson Archives, Incline Village, Nevada

16-18 August 2007

Report:
 
» From the director
» Executive summary
» Mission & goals
» Setting the stage
The legacy of Jerome Lemelson
Getting the inventive juices flowing
The role of an inventor's style on places of invention
The power of place
» Framing the task
» Overview of research on places of invention
» Examining places of invention
Creative people: the people/place nexus
Creative places: the people/place nexus
Creating places of invention: regions and new spaces
Creating places of invention: adapting existing spaces
» Making ideas concrete: public dissemination
» Findings
» Participants
» Agenda
» Acknowledgments
» About the Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation
» About the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution
 
»Appendix 1: "Places of Invention" syllabus (PDF)
»Appendix 2: "Astronomical Places of Invention" (PDF)

     
Agenda:
» Thursday, 16 August:
 

Welcome: Dorothy Lemelson, Art Molella
Keynote presentation: Saul Griffith

 
» Friday, 17 August:
  Welcome: Dorothy Lemelson, Brent Glass
Framing our task: Art Molella
 

Session 1: Setting the stage

  • Overview of the state of research on places of invention: Jennifer Light
  • Discussion, ideas, and issues
 

Session 2: Creative people: the people/place nexus
Discussion leader: Lillian Hoddeson

  • What circumstances bring people together to work and inspire each other?
  • Are there synergies of working in groups?
  • What are the roles of interdisciplinary collaboration and individual personalities?
 

Session 3: Creative places: the people/place nexus
Discussion leader: Fred Gage

  • How do our homes, work, and play environments affect the physiology of our brains and our behavior?
  • What aspects of a place (e.g., the people, the physical plant, the psychological environment, the administration and organization) nurture or inhibit the intrinsic motivation to create?
  • Are there features of place that foster productive collaboration on inventions between amateurs and experts?
» Saturday, 18 August:
 

Session 4: Creating places of invention: regions and new spaces
Discussion leaders: Robert Kargon and Stuart W. Leslie

  • Why do institutions/regions succeed and/or fail at invention and innovation?
  • Which institutions promote invention and innovation in geographic regions, in cities, and across geographic boundaries?
  • How can we use social networks effectively for engineering and design?
  • What is the role of universities in teaching young people how to move mentally into a “place of invention?”
  • What sorts of working environments support controversial, breakthrough, or unorthodox inventions?
  • Can creative places be planned?
  • What advantages and drawbacks do new spaces for invention and innovation present?
 

Session 5: Creating places of invention: adapting existing spaces
Discussion leader: Merton Flemings

  • How does the architecture of a place and its related constraints, culture and funding effect the invention process?
  • Are there ways to maximize the possibility of invention?
 

Session 6: Making ideas concrete: public dissemination
Discussion leaders: Peter Friess and Arthur Molella

  • How can museums design successful exhibits about “places of invention?”
  • What elements of the subject are best dealt with in Web sites, publications, and other media?
  • What products should the Lemelson Center create to disseminate the findings of this Institute?
 


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