Throughout history innovation has been conceived, defined, interpreted and understood in different ways but what is it? This study looks at innovation starting with a brief history of innovation. It then looks at a sample of the multiple definitions that there are of innovation throughout the literature and from these develops a composite definition. From this composite definition, key components such as the creative process and academic models of creativity are looked at. The research then looks at the applicability of innovation through highlighting two studies carried out in England of innovation being applied within a social housing organisation. Through the application by a two dimensional typology of social innovation they had identified innovation being applied to new services and improvements to existing services. The research concludes that innovation can be identified with the creation of a new product or service or an improvement of an existing product or service.
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