The Medici Effect

The Medici Effect that sparked an explosion of knowledge and creativity in 15th century Italy can be used to create new insights and breakthroughs. Can it help you?

What's the Big Idea?

The big idea in the book the 'The Medici Effect' is that breakthrough ideas most often occur when we bring concepts from one field into new, unfamiliar territory. In this space—which the author Johansson calls "the Intersection"—established ideas clash and combine with insights from other fields, disciplines, and cultures, resulting in an explosion of totally new ideas.

The Medici Effect—referring to a remarkable burst of creativity in Florence during the Renaissance—is about creating an intersection of ideas and using these to discover pathbreaking innovations.

What's in it for learning?

The core principles to creating an Intersection are:

  • breaking down associative barriers
  • routinely combining unlike concepts

Learning, and in particular knowledge sharing are key catalysts to interections. How well set up is your organisation to enable Medici effects to take place? How are your people's ideas shared, captured, distributed, discussed and enhanced? Are you using collaborative tools? How do ideas and concepts grow up in your organisation? Are you missing intersections? You might want to look at our Skype article in this section for some ideas on this.

We're big fans of the online brainstorm as a means for getting people from different backgrounds and perspectives together. Coming soon, we'll be sharing opportunities to join brainstorms with our network members and seeing what Medici effects we can create in learning. For more on the Network, click here.

Go and create your own "Medici effect". Let us know how you get on.

Buy the book from the Kineo Bookshop. Want to talk about it, or are you perhaps a member of the Medici family looking to sponsor us? Get in touch.