The Medici Effect

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The Medici Effect author Frans Johansson, describes the term as innovation that takes place when discipline and ideas intersect in different sectors. Johansson’s book name comes from the wealthy banker’s family De Medici, by influence in Italy around the 15th century.  The Medici family have encouraged the painters, sculptures, architects, poets to come up with inspiring ideas, since the family have unleashed creativity.

The Medici effect can be evoked by bringing employees from different business units and various specialisations together within one organisation. For example, employees from the Marketing, Financial Affairs and ICT departments can come together in a workshop, and provide an equal input for a problem (ToolsHero, 2018).

The key point that Johansson discusses is how putting together ideas from different areas — ideas that were always seen as completely apart — can easily generate an explosion of new ideas. And since the best way to have great ideas is to have lots of ideas, the best chances for innovation are at those intersections (Litemind, 2018).

The Medici Effect explores in depth about associative barriers and it’s a path we all take just differently, Johansson writes how we all should break down our associate barriers:

        Exposed themselves to a range of cultures

        Learning differently

        Reversed their assumptions

        Took on multiple perspectives

What’s interesting is that Johansson sets examples of how associate barriers are, and one of the examples is that not many people take different perspectives when comes to creativity.

How and why diversity drives innovation, influence numerous industries and fields worldwide, such as marketing, innovation, economic development, human resource, investing, design, architecture and education.  (Johansson, 2006). 




ToolsHero. (2018). Medici Effect, a great creativity tool | ToolsHero. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Oct. 2018].

Johansson, F. (2006). The Medici effect. Boston, Mass.: Harvard Business School Press.

Litemind. (2018). The Medici Effect – Litemind. [online] Available at: [Accessed 1 Oct. 2018].


SlideShare (2011) The Medici Effect.  Available at: [Accessed 1 Oct. 2018]


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