Press Releases

Carnegie Mellon University Relaunches Successful Breakthrough Products Book as Blueprint for Innovation


PITTSBURGH, Oct. 11, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Innovation moves at a rapid pace. Yet few companies know how to keep the process effective, efficient and repeatable. Jonathan Cagan and Craig M. Vogel, authors of "Creating Breakthrough Products," identify that innovation in the 21st century is spurred by the integration of technology with lifestyle desires. The result is integrated product-service ecosystems that connect activities across spectrums of use.


The happy interaction of technology and lifestyle plays out repeatedly throughout their book, which is designed to offer a roadmap for identifying the key factors associated with successful innovation.

"Great ideas can come from anyone, anywhere. Our book shows readers the importance of design and how the goal of companies should be to not only develop successful new products but sustain that innovation," said Cagan, a professor of mechanical engineering at Carnegie Mellon.

Their book presents insights and methods that break innovation into its fundamental components. Vogel, a professor of design at the University of Cincinnati, argues that "methods create clarity and allow for communication and vision that produces the emotional element to inspire people to do great things." 

"Creating Breakthrough Products" is based on the notion that there is a critical need to explain how to navigate the "fuzzy front end" of product development. A second edition was released Sept. 30, 2012, and is published by FT Press, an imprint of Pearson Education. 

The authors also showcase case studies of successful companies and their products and describe the importance of managing diverse workplace teams. They say innovation can happen anywhere by anyone if they gain insights and follow a rigorous process that identifies real needs and desires, and deliver products and services that make a difference in people's lives.

Consumers have seen a revolution in what they use and how they use it: from integrated financial systems to multi-faceted sensor technology that integrates into our lives. Whether a high-tech product or a meeting at a coffeehouse, everyone seeks ways to maximize the value they derive from the products and services they use.

"We feel these changes in everything we do, and that's why our research and case studies in 'Creating Breakthrough Products' are so essential for every business leader and company to emulate," Cagan said. "The best advice for anyone in business is to keep it focused on the customer. And the best way to do that is to find people's needs, wants and desires and deliver them in the products and services your company develops."

About Carnegie Mellon University: Carnegie Mellon ( is a private, internationally ranked research university with programs in areas ranging from science, technology and business, to public policy, the humanities and the arts. More than 11,000 students in the university's seven schools and colleges benefit from a small student-to-faculty ratio and an education characterized by its focus on creating and implementing solutions for real problems, interdisciplinary collaboration and innovation. A global university, Carnegie Mellon's main campus in the United States is in Pittsburgh, Pa. It has campuses in California's Silicon Valley and Qatar, and programs in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe and Mexico. The university is in the midst of "Inspire Innovation: The Campaign for Carnegie Mellon University," which aims to build its endowment, support faculty, students and innovative research, and enhance the physical campus with equipment and facility improvements.

About FT Press: FT Press (, an imprint of Pearson, publishes high quality books in the areas of General Business, Finance and Investing, Sales and Marketing, Leadership, Management Strategy, Human Resources and Global Business. Our brand is built on the concept of signing and publishing the world's best minds on the most relevant topics.

About Pearson Education: Pearson Education ( is an international media company and the global leader in education services and technology. Pearson is home to such respected publishing brands as FT Press (, Pearson Prentice Hall, Peachpit Press, Addison-Wesley Professional, Cisco Press, Exam Cram, IBM Press, Que and Sams Publishing, which has as their online publishing arm, InformIT ( The Trusted Technology Learning Source, Pearson (NYSE: PSO) primary businesses include: Pearson Education, Financial Times Group and the Penguin Group.



SOURCE Carnegie Mellon University