Best Books on Innovation – My Choice (UPDATED)


There are hundreds of books published each year with topic: Innovation. Many of them are strictly scientific, others are business or inspirational, but how to know which are worth to read?

My humble choice of books published in last 10 years is following:

Introduction to Innovation:

The Art of Innovation (Tom Kelley) – This is the first innovation book I read. Tom Kelley is giving here the description of IDEO’s creative process & their innovation ecosystem.

Borrowing Brilliance (David Kord Murray) – walkthrough the innovators mind by building on the ideas of others.

The Ten Faces of Innovation (Tom Kelley) – Another Tom Kelley’s with focus on types of innovation & types of innovators.

History & future of innovation:

Exploiting Chaos (Jeremy Gutsche) – TrendHunter founder gives great overview of innovation trends in past and future.

The Medici Effect (Frans Johansson) – Right ecosystem should produce innovation, very useful book.


The Idea Book (Fredrik Haren) – great creativity starter, I’m often coming back to this book.

Making Ideas Happen (Scott Belsky) – 99u’s Scott Belsky with interesting book which can be described strictly as the header suggests “Making Ideas Happen”.

Anticonventional Thinking (Jeffrey Baumgartner) – Introduction to Anticonventional Thinking – a new creativity method as an alternative to the well-known brainstorming. ACT should replace brainstorming and give every innovation manager a better chance for realisation of ideas.

Innovation Management must reads:

The Innovative Leader (Paul Sloane) – I love how Paul Sloane write (I’m trying to write in the same way), this book is great first input for every innovation manager.

Relentless Innovation (Jeffrey Phillips) – Book written by my favorite blogger is giving many  (original) informations for innovation managers and business leaders.

Innovation Paradox (Tony Davila, Marc J. Epstein) – Really great book from authors of Making Innovation Work. It gives an overview on Innovation Paradox – problem of big corporations which must learn to think and do like startups.

The Innovation Book (Max McKeown) – Overview of innovation management, great book to start with this topic.


Steve Jobs (Walter Isaacson) – Apple’s and Jobs’ innovation system through years.

Screw It, Let’s Do It: Lessons in Life and Business (Richard Branson) – Virgin’s founder gives here many lessons about creativity and innovation.

Innovation “Manuals” or “Guidebooks”:

Making Innovation Work (Davila, Epstein, Shelton) – The most comprehensive book about the topic with full overview of innovation methods & process.

Managing Innovation (Tidd & Bessant) – Simply: encyclopedia of innovation – must have for everyone interested in this topic.

Examples of Innovation:

Management of Fuzzy Front End of Innovation (Gassmann, Schweitzer) – Scientific and practical overview of the Front End of Innovation topic

Additional books, let’s call them inspirational:

Lean Startup (Eric Ries) – Everybody is talking about it.

Rework (Fried, Heinemeier Hansson) – Transform the way you work everyday. Book for business-owners, start-ups and entrepreneurs who wants quick and effective advices.

Better and Faster (Jeremy Gutsche) – This is continuing on the shoulders of its predecessor “Exploiting Chaos”. The book is a quick guide how to be successful in today’s world marking the benefits of newest technology and the need of trend spotting. It has three parts: Awaken, Hunt and Capture. After awaking the Hunter, author is leading us through the hunt, and to the end – Capture. Of course this is truly an idea process for every individual, or better to say every entrepreneur-to-be.

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