by CIO Staff

2001 CIO 100 Awards: Why We Once Again Chose Innovation as Our Theme

Aug 15, 20013 mins

In 14 years of the CIO-100 awards, we’ve rarely duplicated a theme. We’ve covered quality, global business, customer service, value chains and more. This is the second time we’ve explored innovation.

Why innovation, and why now? Haven’t we had enough innovation during the past few years with the Internet boom?and look where it got us! Isn’t it time to get back to basics?

According to the executives and pundits in this issue, innovation is a basic. And what happened during the past few years was not just innovation; there was a fair dose of “insane delusion,” says Michael Schrage in “How Things Change,” on Page 116. “There’s something wrong with not testing innovation metrics against common sense.”

This year’s issue profiles companies that are committed to innovation of all kinds. Some are product innovators; some have changed the terms of competition by innovating new processes; others are breaking new ground in the relationships they’ve forged. We celebrate their excellence and share with you the secrets of their success.

The CIO-100 is one of our most ambitious projects. Departments Editor Sandy Kendall led this issue from start to finish. To prepare for the assignment, Sandy read stacks of books and papers, attended conferences and talked to everyone who is anyone in the study of innovation. Armed with this knowledge (and with the generous input of Rick Swanborg, president of ICEX and a longtime supporter of CIO), she created the application criteria and led the evaluation of over 1,000 applicants. She wrote the overview article, “Innovation Generation” on Page 52, and interviewed Schrage, Gary Hamel and the other thought leaders in this issue. Her dedication is evident on every page.

I’m sure Sandy would agree that she couldn’t have done all this without the support of two people?Special Projects Editor Mindy Blodgett, who steers all of our awards programs and projects, and Special Projects Assistant Cristina Sousa, whose genius for detail is matched only by her passion for quality and excellent customer service.

Design-wise, this issue is smart, clean and easily navigable, thanks to Associate Art Director Owen Edwards, who led the design team and created the overall look and feel with enthusiasm and a singleness of purpose that was a wonder to behold.

While the editorial team wrapped up its work in July, the fun culminates on Aug. 12 to 14 at the CIO-100 Symposium at the Hotel del Coronado in San Diego, where honorees will gather to hear from such original thinkers as Paul Saffo, John Seely Brown and Geoffrey Moore, network with each other and be feted at our gala awards ceremony.

We know not everyone can join us for these face-to-face events, and we also know that meeting and sharing experiences with your fellow CIOs is your most highly valued opportunity for learning. So a few months ago, we created the CIO Best Practice Exchange?a secure, members-only, moderated online forum in which a select group of IT executives exchange best practices on everything from choosing a vendor to IT value to ERP. The best part of the exchange is that no vendors or consultants are allowed! If you’d like information on becoming a member, e-mail Martha Heller, director of the exchange, at