Penicillin: the unexpected

As seen on a plaque at Scienceworks.

The penicillin mold was a pest, not a resource. Backteriologists went to great lengths to protect their bacterial cultures against contamination by it. Then in the 1920s, a London doctor, Alexander Fleming, realized that this “pest” was exactly the bacterial killer bacteriologists had been looking for – and the penicillin mold became a valuable resource.

A nice demonstration of the first, and most valuable, of Peter Drucker‘s seven sources of innovation.

The unexpected. The unexpected success, failure or outside event.

Posted via web from PEG @ Posterous

Posted under: Case Study, Innovation

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