thinkers50 ranked thinker

Henry Chesbrough

Innovation thought leader who launched the “open innovation” paradigm; his research focuses on technology management and innovation strategy.

01. ranked thinker

Ranked #42 in 2017.

Previous positions: #24 (2015), #37 (2013), and #23 (2011).


Thinkers50 2011 Innovation Award.


Launched the Open Innovation Community, an active forum for all things “open innovation”.


An organizational theorist, Chesbrough has written extensively on the topic of innovation. He is best known for his work on open innovation, based on the central idea that – in a world of widely distributed knowledge where the boundaries between a firm and its environment have become more permeable – companies cannot afford to rely entirely on their own research for innovation. Chesbrough’s other fields of expertise include comparative industry evolution, innovation strategy, business development, and managing intellectual property.




Adjunct professor at Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley, Chesbrough is also executive director of its Center for Open Innovation. In addition, he teaches at Esade Business School at Spain’s University Ramon Llull. Chesbrough previously served as product manager and vice president of marketing at Quantum Corporation, a manufacturer of data storage devices and systems. He received the Industrial Research Institute’s Medal of Achievement in 2017.


Open Services Innovation: Rethinking Your Business to Grow and Compete in a New Era (Wiley & Sons, 2011); Open Business Models: How To Thrive In The New Innovation Landscape (HBR Press, 2006); Open Innovation: The New Imperative for Creating and Profiting from Technology (HBR Press, 2003).


Henry Chesbrough



Media Picks


“The father of open innovation.

Stuart Crainer & Des Dearlove, Thinkers50