The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy opens with Arthur Dent’s home being mowed down to make way for a new bypass. Author Douglas Adams humourously details Mr. Dent’s frustrations trying to get more information to challenge the municipality’s decision. It turns out the plans, and their location, had been obfuscated to ensure the process was seen through to completion with the fewest hiccups along the way.

That’s intentional exclusion, an approach I was first introduced to in those words when watching a recently released TEDxToronto Talk by Dave Meslin. His brilliant presentation explores the distinction between reaching your audience and feeling you’ve covered your ass. He proves his point by comparing the  approaches of for-profit business trying to make a profit and government trying to engage the public.

Success… progress… solutions to problems within a specific discipline are usually found by examining the approach of organizations and individuals operating within other disciplines. This is entry level innovation.

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