Innovation Overview

VCI’s Innovation Practice helps global organizations to achieve a step-change improvement throughout the organization, blending technology development, business model design and corporate strategy to deliver implementable improvements and business results. We take a comprehensive approach to Innovation, focused on improving the entire system to achieve benefits greater than a single program alone can.

We have over two decades of experience in analyzing client needs using both inductive “bottom-up” and deductive “top-down” analyses and in applying the right people, including external participants where beneficial, to design roadmaps for the future.

VCI places equal emphasis on all three aspects of Innovation: Need Identification, Idea Development and Implementation and blends them with comprehensive Change Management and Communications programs to create clear Technology Roadmaps and Innovation Architectures for all efforts within the organization.

For problems too large or complex to solved by a single company, VCI has experience in bringing companies together to form “Open Innovation Consortia”. With experience doing so over three continents and with over a hundred participating organizations, VCI serves as a bridge between global organizations looking to innovate in an open, collaborative fashion while balancing the challenges of IP, funding, and large scale corporate change issues.

Paul Leonardi's Bio

Paul Leonardi is the Duca Family Professor of Technology Management at UC Santa Barbara. He holds appointments in the Technology Management Program (TMP) and the Department of Communication. He is also the Investment Group of Santa Barbara Founding Director of the Master of Technology Management Program.

Dr. Leonardi’s research, teaching, and consulting focus on helping companies to create and share knowledge more effectively. He is interested in how implementing new technologies and harnessing the power of informal social networks can help companies take advantage of their knowledge assets to create innovative products and services.

He has authored dozens of articles that have appeared in top journals across the fields of management, organization studies, communication studies, and information systems research. He is also the author of three books on innovation and organizational change. He has won major awards for his research from the Academy of Management, the American Sociological Association, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the Association for Information Systems, the International Communication Association, the National Communication Association, and the National Science Foundation.

Over the past decade, he has consulted with for-profit and non-profit organizations about how to improve communication between departments, how to use social technologies to improve internal knowledge sharing, how to structure global product development operations, and how to manage the human aspects of new technology implementation.

Before coming to UCSB, Dr. Leonardi worked at Northwestern University on the faculties of the School of Communication, the McCormick School of Engineering, and the Kellogg School of Management. He received his Ph.D. in Management Science and Engineering from the Center for Work, Technology, and Organization at Stanford University.

Willem Buhrmann's Bio


Willem Buhrmann is an experienced mining professional that has extensive African and international experience in project management, strategy implementation and corporate finance. Willem was previously Business Development Manager (Africa) for Rio Tinto Energy and more recently consulted to the wider mining industry including majors and a variety of juniors. He holds degrees in finance (Chartered Accountant) and the legal world (LL.B.)

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