Marianne Lefever is an architect and a strategic thinker with over 10 years of experience in climate mitigation and sustainable city design. After an exciting career as a structural engineer, renewable energy consultant, innovation consultant, and futurist, she returned to her first love of sustainable city design. After living all over the globe, she landed in Toronto. From here, she is currently working with a Dutch urban planning studio to transform cities around the globe into healthy environments and communities.
Working in the innovation space on a daily basis, she experienced firsthand how big the gap is between where we want to be and what we’re doing to get there. Trying to close this gap, she searches for signs of unreasonable innovation and explores how she can use it in her work to help her clients change their perspective and act.
Will We Have the Courage to Innovate?
Humans are capable of unreasonable innovation, so what’s slowing us down? We know that massive change is required to create sustainability in a world of challenged resources and systems. However, what we like to call “innovation” is often just a different version of what we have always done. A better word for this is “incrementalism”.
Where incrementalism changes the symptoms of an issue, unreasonable innovation gets to the core. If we want to overcome the social, economic and environmental challenges we’re facing and really innovate for the win, we will have to gather the courage to recognize these challenges and embrace unreasonable innovation. We must dare to think differently and reframe how we see the problem if we want to come up with radical new solutions.