Supporting Other People’s Innovations

As much as I have innovated, I also like to support innovation. I’ve done this throughout my career but in recent years I’ve been extremely lucky to have had the resources (both time and finances) to play a more substantial role in supporting some pretty interesting, and extremely innovative, projects.

First, with my Shuttleworth Fellowship the first thing I invested in was support for Substance.io. We then followed this up with additional funding from Coko. The aim here was to support, what I believe to be, a critical player in the open source publishing ecosystem.

Next Coko also helped, both financially and with additional support and advice, Nokome Bentley and the wonderful Stenci.la project. Nokome has since received a grant from the Sloan Foundation. Which is pretty awesome and very much deserved.

And most recently Coko has supported ScienceFair financially so Richard Unna-Smith can work half time on the project while continuing to work with us on PubSweet. I wrote a little more about Sciencefair here.

In addition, Coko has helped the bring together of a bunch of very interesting open science/open source/open publishing projects under the umbrella of the (still very new) Open Source Alliance for Open Science (I facilitated the first OSAOS meeting in Portland a few months ago). I’m hoping OSAOS will foster a lot of cross-collaboration and innovations will appear out of this mixing of minds.

Anyways, innovation is really about creating a culture of possibility and an ecosystem of connected thinking as much as it about supporting individual projects/approaches, and I’m very proud of having played a part in helping support some of these people and bring some very smart folks into conversation with each other.

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