Closed World Principle

The Closed World Principle was discovered by our colleague, Dr. Roni Horowitz, and it is a key part of the SIT method. The principle states: “When solving a problem or creating a new solution, one should strive to use only those resources that exist in the product or system itself or in its immediate vicinity.”

Think of the Closed World as a boundary surrounding the product or service. When you recruit resources inside that boundary to generate an idea, the idea tends to be more creative.

For example, if you need to repair a flat tire and the lugnuts are rusted, the easy solution is to use your cell phone to call for help. However, using the Closed World Principle, you may realize that using the jack to provide added leverage to the tire wrench, you can remove the lugnuts using items that already exist in the car – the Closed World in this situation.

The beauty of the Closed World is that you can often time change the size of it by zooming in or zooming out. Doing so completely changes the types of innovations you will create using the SIT method.

This is counterintuitive because most people think that you need to get way outside the current domain to be innovative. Traditional creativity and innovation methods use random stimuli to push you outside the Closed World, when they should be doing the opposite.

Read more about the Closed World Principle and how it applies to real world scenarios

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