Il Impact 2018

Driving Meaningful Impact in Corporate Innovation


October 16-18 2018


Event Has PassedJoin us at Impact 2019 Download App

Registration is now open for Impact 2019, October 23-24, 2019 in San Francisco. Register here.

What is Impact 2018?


Impact 2018 is the only conference designed just for corporate innovators, to help you achieve more impact in your organization and your career.

Through interactive whiteboard sessions and workshops, attendees will learn about metrics, governance, working with business units, as well as personal innovation, branding, and career development. Infused with peer-to-peer learning, skill-building, and interactive activities, our off-the-record sessions are for attendees' ears only. No slides, no panels, just real conversations with your peers at the world's largest companies.

Participants will get concrete take-aways, such as templates and member-contributed tools to implement in their organizations, along with access to a highly-curated network of innovation professionals willing to share best practices and lessons learned the hard way.

Taking place October 16-18, 2018 in Boston, Impact 2018 also offers attendees the opportunity to experience the heart of Boston through morning yoga, off-site tours, and runs along the Charles River.

Corporate & Personal Innovation Workshops

Actionable Takeaways, Frameworks & Solutions

Interactive, Off-the-Record Whiteboard Sessions

New Relationships, Not Business Cards

Innovation Leader's Signature Experiences


Innovation Leader events are nothing like a traditional conference. That’s why, in addition to curated innovation tracks, workshops, and whiteboard sessions, Impact 2018 attendees can register for off-site activities such as…

 Interactive Case Study at Harvard Business School


Innovations of Cambridge Walking Tour

Harvard Innovation Lab: One-on-One Startup Meetings
Rowing Clinic on the Charles (for Newbies)
Paint Nite at a Local Restaurant
Tour MIT’s Venture Fund, The Engine, and Makerspace lab
*Due to limited space, please register for these off-site activities during registration checkout.

Speakers & Session Leaders

Speakers are being added to the roster regularly, so check back often for updates!

Bizzabo Speakers

Conference Agenda

Can't see the agenda? Download the PDF version here.


The “at-a-glance” agenda for Impact 2018 is posted below. Check back often for updates, including keynotes, session topics, activities, and more...

Tuesday, October 16th

1:00 p.m.

Pre-Event Activities

Options include:

  • Community Rowing: Get onto the Charles River for a learn-to-row experience
  • Startup One-on-One Meetings at the Harvard Innovation Lab
  • Tour of Johnson & Johnson’s JLabs incubation space
  • MIT’s The Engine: Tour MIT’s startup space and get briefed on emerging technologies
  • Harvard University Walking Tour
  • Paint Nite (evening option)

4:00 p.m.

Pre-Event Registration Opens

Wednesday, October 17th

7:00 a.m.

Registration and Breakfast Open

8:00 a.m.

Welcome and Intros

8:15 a.m.

Fireside Chat

Vikki Dobbs Beck, ILMxLAB

Lucasfilm, Industrial Light & Magic and Skywalker Sound

9:00 a.m.

Coffee Break

9:30 a.m.

Corporate Innovation Breakouts 

Sessions on best practices, challenges, and more, led by the best corporate innovators in the world, including Pfizer, Anthem, and Boeing

10:45 a.m.

Coffee & Snack Break

11:15 a.m.

Corporate Innovation Breakouts

Sessions on best practices, challenges, and more, led by the best corporate innovators in the world, including Northrop Grumman, Boston Celtics, and MIT

12:30 p.m.


1:30 p.m.

Skill-building Workshop

2:45 p.m.

Coffee & Snack Break

3:15 p.m.

Corporate Innovation Breakouts

Sessions on best practices, challenges, and more, led by the best corporate innovators in the world, including Walmart, Disney, and Johnson & Johnson

4:45 p.m.

Fireside Chat

5:15 p.m.

Day 1 Wrap-up

Thursday, October 18th

7:00 a.m.

Registration and Breakfast Open

8:00 a.m.

Day 2 Intros

8:15 a.m.

Fireside Chat

9:15 a.m.

Corporate Innovation Breakouts

Sessions on best practices, challenges, and more, led by the best corporate innovators in the world, including ESPN, PepsiCo, and NASDAQ

10:30 a.m.

Coffee & Snack Break

11:00 a.m.

Corporate Innovation Breakouts

Sessions on best practices, challenges, and more, led by the best corporate innovators in the world, including Dunkin Brands, NBCUniversal, and Nike

12:15 p.m.


1:15 p.m.

Fireside Chat

Michael Norton, Harvard Business School

2:00 p.m.

Event Wrap-up

Hotel & Travel Information

Please note, that we have extended the deadline to make reservations under the room block to October 1st. After this date we will not be able to guarantee the rate and availability at the hotel.

Hotel: We've arranged a room block with discounted rates at the Hyatt Regency Cambridge located at 575 Memorial Drive, Cambridge, MA 02139. The majority of Impact 2018 takes place at this location.

We highly recommend booking early, as Head of the Charles is also occurring that week (Oct. 20-21) and accommodation in the city will be difficult to find.

Click here to make your hotel reservations » or call (888) 421-1442 and mention the Innovation Leader room block.

Transportation: Click here for transportation and parking information.

Arrival: If you are flying in for Impact 2018, we recommend arriving by mid-day on October 16th, as we’ll have pre-conference programming starting that evening. October 17 & 18 are two full days of content and activities.

Departure: The program will end in the early evening on Thursday, October 18 at 4pm ET.

Questions: If you have additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact Elana Wilner at

Justify Your Attendance

Need help convincing your management to send you to Impact 2018? Here's help.

Register for Impact 2018

Innovation Leader members save $400! Join today for the discounted rates on all of our conferences and events.
Already a member? Sign in here »

PLEASE NOTE: To ensure you can continue the conversation after the event, Innovation Leader provides all attendees, including sponsors, with an email directory of all the participants at the event. The Impact 2018 conference is for current corporate innovation/R&D/strategy/HR professionals, as well as innovation leaders in government, military, or nonprofit organizations. Consultants, advisors, software vendors, and others who market products or services to corporate executives may not attend Impact 2018. All registrants to be approved by Innovation Leader. Questions? Contact us »


Space is limited to 60 corporate innovation, strategy and R&D professionals. That’s everyone from Chief Innovation Officers and VPs of Innovation, to Directors of Innovation and R&D Managers. If you’re responsible for new products or services inside your company, you’re probably the right fit.

Introducing the 2018 Impact Awards Finalists

We're thrilled to announce the 30 finalists for our 2018 Impact Awards, selected by Innovation Leader's editorial team. Next step: our judging panel of corporate innovation executives will choose the winners. 

The 30 finalists are presented in alphabetical order below. Scroll through the tabs at the top to learn more about their initiatives, and join us at Impact 2018 this October to find out who wins — and hear lessons and best practices directly from many of our winning companies. 

Entries for 2018 Impact Awards have closed, but you can see all the details about this year's submission process, and be prepared for 2019. Thanks to everyone who submitted — we loved hearing about the innovation impact you've delivered in your organizations!

If you're having trouble viewing the finalists below, you can download a PDF with the full list of finalists and details about what they've been nominated for here.

Initiative: IdeaSpace

Launched: 2015

The goal of the IdeaSpace, an idea collection platform at Airbus, is to broaden participation in innovation “beyond engineering, R&D, and emerging technology to other functions such as sales and marketing, ultimately creating a more business-centered innovation mindset,” according to the company’s award submission. Idea campaigns are tied to clear company priorities. More than 40,000 people use the IdeaSpace platform, and in 2018, it will support an estimated 25 different campaigns. The success of IdeaSpace has led to additional innovation infrastructure at Airbus, including the BizLab, an accelerator to support intrapreneurs, and the ProtoSpace, which provides design and prototyping resources.


Featuring the 2018 Impact Awards

Innovation Leader’s Impact Awards honor companies that have achieved extraordinary outcomes related to their innovation programs.

The 2018 entries have closed, but be sure to attend Impact 2018 to see the winners.

See all the details about the 2018 submissions, and be prepared for next year.

Pop-up Demos

Demos can be viewed on-site in the Presidents Ballroom A/B on October 18th.


Planbox is a pioneering provider of AI-powered Agile Work Innovation Management software built for companies and teams of all sizes, and trusted by some of the world’s most recognized brands such as AMN Healthcare, BP, Honeywell, PwC, National Grid, Sun Life Financial, Whirlpool, Willis Towers Watson, and Verizon. An AI engine mines your data for insights while your community collaborates to discover, develop, and capitalize on the best ideas from your innovation ecosystem of employees, customers, partners, and start-ups.

HYPE Innovation

HYPE Innovation will demonstrate an idea management platform from trend scouting over ideation and prototyping to the hand-shake with the PMO. Trends drive creativity and lead to strategic innovation areas aligning companies on their core needs. These influence campaigns and channels in the system. Channels are general idea boxes, whereas campaigns ask specific questions and seek corresponding ideas. These can be collaborated on by the community participants and will then be evaluated. Advancing ideas become concepts where aspects are developed then critiqued based on review templates. If a concept advances, it will become a project which will later be implemented.


The Proseeder platform empowers corporations with adaptive tools for managing deal flow, collaboration, diligence, and execution; quantifying strategic ROI of investments & partnerships that supercharge a corporation's efforts to innovate iteratively. Join Proseeder for a demo at Impact 2018, and learn why many Fortune 100 corporations choose Proseeder to manage their operations.


Optimize #YourImpact. Portfolio management is a critical driver of innovation performance. Business leaders must be able to easily visualize, explore, prioritize, and resource their portfolio of innovation investments. Sopheon's Accolade software eliminates the guesswork, helping organizations weigh the trade-offs amongst risks, rewards, costs and resource requirements to deliver more high-value new products to market faster. How confident are you that your investments will have the greatest impact on your innovation performance? Are you optimizing your impact? Join Sopheon to see how world-class brands such as Parker Hannifin, Honeywell, Conagra Brands, and P&G drive growth through optimizing the impact of their portfolios.


Startgrid is a purpose-built platform for managing startup ecosystems and delivering innovation across the enterprise. Stop by to participate in a co-discovery project to build a global innovation landscape.


Bevi is an all-in-one hydration solution that provides customizable, still, and sparkling flavored waters to offices and facilities across the US and Canada. Founded in 2013, we continue to grow our healthy flavor offerings and constantly strive to add more customization capabilities to our line of smart water coolers. Simply put, we’re on a mission to pour something good—good for you and good for the environment. Since 2013, we've saved the waste generated by more than 35 million bottles and cans.



KPMG Ignition can help you become future-ready, inspiring you from the first inkling of an idea to a market-ready solution. A seamless journey of exploration, discovery, fact-finding, and solution development, we tackle the challenges of innovation from beginning to end, or at any point in between. We bring the collective capabilities of our entire firm to address your objectives. Combining passion and creativity, elite research and analysis skills, deep knowledge of specific sectors and functions, and cutting-edge technology capabilities, our dynamic teams know what it takes to turn your idea into reality—at market speed and for lasting market impact.


The edison365 Suite is an Ideas Management and Project and Portfolio Management solution built for Microsoft Office 365 which leverages existing investments and works with all the applications users are already familiar with. Deployed and managed via the cloud, edison365 is built to work entirely on Microsoft Office 365, with data secured in the Office 365 tenant. With edison365ideas, businesses can identify areas of focus, and gather ideas from employees to achieve specific, valuable problem-solving, while giving them a voice and platform to raise their ideas. Then, using the award-winning Microsoft PPM solution edison365projects which builds upon the base functionality of Microsoft Project Online, businesses can seamlessly execute projects through an intuitive, sleek interface, to generate measurable results based on insight from every level of the organization.


If you’d like to see a demo of Spigit in action or want to learn more about a specific feature of Spigit, please see the Spigit representative at the event.


Hydrow, a live outdoor reality (LOR) rower created by Crew in Cambridge Mass, generates 86% muscle engagement — compared to 44% for biking & running — through engaging workouts led by athletes including those training for the U.S. National Rowing team. The Hydrow delivers a live on-river outdoor rowing experience at-home that engages two times more of the body's muscles than biking or running which results in over 400 calories burned in a 20-minute workout. 


Babson Executive Education

Beyond the Champion argues that innovation is a talent that requires distinct skills and expertise, just like finance or marketing. Viewing innovation as a discipline in its own right, it is easy to see that breakthrough wins require an organizational design with clearly delineated roles, responsibilities, and career tracks for those who shoulder the responsibility for new products. Drawing on the results of a four-year study and two decades of related research, this book outlines three fundamental competencies necessary for innovation: discovery, incubation, and acceleration. Mapping these skills onto roles and opportunities for advancement, the authors deliver a pioneering blueprint for sustainable innovation.

Stop by the Babson Executive Education pop-up demo to learn more from Gina O’Connor, a co-author of the book.



Wellspring will give you a tour of our software platform for R&D and Innovation Management, potentially including modules for Technology Search & Scouting, IP and Contracts Management, and Innovation Process and Portfolio Management. The exact screens we show will depend on your organization's needs and ambitions.

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