From a recent conversation with a friend who had just spent some time working overseas in a certain South East Asian country:

The government is on a full-throttle drive to foster innovation. They are inviting innovation experts from all over the world to come speak to local businesses and schools - but only those experts who are "safe" and not "too radical" need apply!

Innovation is not safe! By its nature innovation seeks to break out of entrenched thinking and processes. "Safe" innovation is just another euphemism for "continuous improvement", which is of course NOT innovation.

No wonder larger businesses, built on a similar basis of strict top-down control, pro-conformity and a deep seated fear of change, find it hard to innovate.