But they did come up with 2,000 possibilities.
About 190 people
taking part in Innovation Growth Day finished the event with a 20-minute
“Thinkathon,” generating ideas to foster more innovation in the state. “To my
knowledge, this is the first time a state has done this,” said event leader
“If some of the big
organizations (Fortune 500 companies) knew that almost 200 innovators were here
at the Fargodome” they would be very interested in
He hopes the seminar
The seminar was sponsored by the North Dakota Department of Commerce’s Division of Economic Development and Finance and 14 businesses and organizations, said economic development director Linda Butts.
“This was not innovation day for government. This was innovation day for you,” Butts told the audience. “This is all about working together to build that community of innovation.” The Thinkathon ideas will be collated and distributed by the economic development division.
Ideas ran the gamut
from the serious:
- Find more funding for innovators.
- Build an ambassadors of innovation Web site.
- Tax breaks for innovators who move here and stay.
- More in-state flights between major cities to cut time-wasting connections through the Twin Cities.
To the fun:
- A Tour de North Dakota bicycle race.
- Every city has its own food fest (think really big progressive dinner).
To the silly (or scary):
- Everybody who moves to
- Arrest anyone who is not innovative.
said they felt energized, even at the end of a long day. “It was fresh. It was
sparky,” said Gail Nelson of
The processes and
tools organize thoughts “so you can grab a hold of them and run with it,” said
Jennifer Feist of Valley Development Group of
“We’ll start trying them (ideas) tomorrow,” he said. Haman said it was a shame the seminar was limited to a day, given the ideas generated. “There’s a general theme in having some activities that encourage people to think about innovation,” he said. “Wouldn’t it be wonderful if 2004 was The Year of Innovation?”