Joachim von Heimburg

Joachim von Heimburg is one of the most experienced innovation practitioners in Europe/Middle East/Africa. He designs and implements innovation and R&D strategies, processes and structures and makes them operational creating value for the business.

From 2006 to 2009 he led the culture change of Procter & Gamble from traditional R&D to Open Innovation in EMEA. From 2010 to 2012 he was General Manager Innovation and Corporate Program at SABIC, one of the leading global chemical companies. In this new position working for SABIC’s top management he laid the foundations for a more innovate SABIC. At present, he works as Innovation Architect and Executive Advisor on state-of-the art innovation and R&D capabilities and structures helping companies and other organizations to innovate how they innovate.

He has extensive multi-cultural working experience in 7 countries. He holds a Ph.D. in theoretical physics of the University of Marburg, Germany and studied economics at the University of Frankfurt, Germany. He is an individual member of EIRMA (European Industrial Research Management Association) and a certified Innovation Standards Professional (PDMA). More on his website:

All articles by Joachim von Heimburg:

  • To Approach Change Differently, Change Your Approach

    A More Innovative Europe? Think Different About Innovation!

    Dec 20, 2018 | In: Enabling Factors

    In Brussels, the Research & Innovation Program Horizon Europe (FP9) is the talk of ‘EU town’. Horizon Europe is hoped to be the great leap forward of Europe to close the innovation gap to the US and stay ahead of the emerging innovation giant China in the coming years.

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    Industry 4.0 and the Internet-of-Things (IoT): Learning from the German Chemical Industry

    Dec 29, 2016 | In: Life Cycle Processes

    The keyword “Industry 4.0” is no longer an empty cliché or a black box; it is currently probably the most important topic within the German economy. Not only will existing processes be revolutionized – but also new businesses and business models will arise. More and more companies have already started to tap into its potential.

  • Thinking different creativity

    Innovation in and of the Board Room

    Sep 08, 2014 | In: Organization & Culture, Strategies

    Innovation and more of it has become the mantra of top management. The ability to innovate and thereby sustainably create value for the business is becoming the defining competitive advantage for companies which want to thrive in a globalized economy. So obviously, driving innovation is a key job for top management, the CEO and the C-Suite. But what about the Board? What role should it play in the innovation game – if any?

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    The Hidden Innovation Barriers: Company Culture and your Brain

    Jun 02, 2014 | In: Organization & Culture

    When you ask Executives what they want beyond short profit and revenue growth they’ll likely say ‘more innovation’. Why? Because they face unprecedented business challenges. Let’s look back. The current modern corporation was invented about 100 years ago – at the start of the 20th century. That’s when the big companies were born like the US railroad companies, US Steel, the big banks, IG Farben. Some exist still today (GE).

  • Disappointed By Innovation Results? It’s The Culture, Stupid!

    Disappointed By Innovation Results? It’s The Culture!

    Sep 09, 2013 | In: Organization & Culture

    Though companies invest into innovation they like results less and less. There seems to be a glass ceiling for driving innovation, which neither new tools and processes nor innovation consultants seem to crack. It is time to face the elephant in the room: company culture and its impact on innovation performance. Top management needs to learn deal with it. Then company culture will become a driver of innovation rather than getting in the way.

  • Driving Innovation by Corporate Venturing

    Driving Innovation by Corporate Venturing: How to Master Governance and Culture Challenges

    Jan 07, 2013 | In: Strategies

    Corporate venturing is becoming an important tool for big companies to complement internally driven innovation activities. However, becoming a serious player in corporate venturing requires governance principles and creates cultural dynamics which do not fit into existing corporate environment easily. This article discusses those challenges in detail and suggests ways how to deal with them.

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    Innovation and the Law of Averages

    Nov 23, 2011 | In:

    The Law of Averages is a widely-accepted concept of cold calling in sales. But it also applies to innovation. Jim Clemmer explains how.