Summary of Diffusion of Innovation

Free Press,
First Edition: 1982 more...

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Diffusion of Innovation book summary
Except for “early adopters,” most people accept innovations slowly — and sometimes, they’re right.


9 Overall

8 Applicability

10 Innovation

8 Style


Why would a villager draw polluted drinking water from a canal where a dead donkey floats instead of using a nearby tap to get clean drinking water? Why did it take hundreds of years for the British Navy to give sailors oranges and lemons when tests had proven that citrus fruit cured the scurvy that killed sailors and left vessels under-manned? Why do eminently sensible things not happen? If you’ve ever wondered, this book will give you the answers. It’s a thick, heavy, academic tome, but spiced with abundant anecdotes and observations that make it an easy, enjoyable read. This is the rare book that combines solid intellectual content with thought-provoking entertainment. highly recommends this classic from 1962 to all audiences, but especially those whose business it is to understand and use the social mechanisms through which innovations must diffuse.

In this summary, you will learn

  • An extraordinary amount about how innovations diffuse through social systems; and
  • How to introduce and sell new products in ways that take advantage of this knowledge.


Contradicting Tradition
Villagers in the Peruvian village of Los Molinas suffered the usual horrifying number of infectious and parasitical afflictions caused by filthy, contaminated drinking water. Eliminating these plagues was easy - all they had to do was boil their water before drinking...
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About the Author

Everett M. Rogers is a Distinguished Professor in the Department of Communication and Journalism at the University of New Mexico, where he teaches and conducts research on the diffusion of innovations. The four previous editions of Diffusion of Innovations have received various awards, including designation as a "Citation Classic" by the Institute for Scientific Information.

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