The Next Disruptors

A guide to additional information about our cover story.

(Business 2.0 Magazine) -- The Work of Clayton Christensen The guru who gave disruptive technology its name wrote three books that are required reading. Start with The Innovator's Dilemma (1997), then try The Innovator's Solution (2003) and Seeing What's Next (2004).

Edison: A Life of Invention, by Paul Israel (1998) Thomas Edison was the DaVinci of disruption, as his forward-thinking discoveries shook up dozens of old industries and helped create almost as many new ones. This scholarly biography looks at the methods behind Edison's genius.

Playback: From the Victrola to the MP3, 100 Years of Music, Machines, and Money, by Mark Coleman (2003) The history of the music business is actually a history of successive waves of technological disruption. Coleman's compact little book chronicles how one industry has struggled to master the uncertainties of technological change.

Hanging Up the (Old) Phone: IP Communications in 2004, by Robert A. Burgelman et al. (2004) Written by Stanford's Graduate School of Business, this case study looks at how VOIP technology has undermined telecom's long-distance incumbents--and examines what they're doing to topple the old guard. Management consultant Michael Urlocker's blog is all about technological disruption. He also grades companies on how disruptive they are and offers downloadable worksheets designed to help managers learn how to shake things up. If you can tolerate Mark Cuban's occasional ranting and raving, any would-be disruptor can learn a thing or two from his "question everything, and take no prisoners" ruminations about high-tech innovation.

Tucker: A Man and His Dream (1988) Based on the real-life story of automotive entrepreneur Preston Tucker, this Francis Ford Coppola film shows how one would-be disruptor was thwarted by entrenched players--in this case, Detroit's Big Three.  Top of page

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