There's no question that the trend toward green initiatives has already entrenched itself into many aspects of business and into the realm of open innovation and the innovation pipeline in particular.
Take GreenOrder, a consulting firm that specializes in teaching Fortune 500 clients how going green leads to more green, more prospects and membership into the new (and soon to be only) way of doing business and seeing business. In this CNN/Money article, one of the firm's principals is quoted saying that there will never again be a building built in New York City that is not a green building.
So back to the original question of what does the greening of retail, of consulting, of the Fortune 500 world -- of all business, really -- mean for open innovation and the innovation pipeline?
What we're seeing is companies that can't get by simply by "talking the talk" -- walking the walk is the norm, not the exception. So, perhaps more than ever, bigger corporations will be forced to cultivate the lands outside their buildings (green or not) and develop real relationships with those smaller companies, entrepreneurs and idea people who can effectively bring in the green piece of the pie in a way that works on a number of levels, culturally, economically, socially and otherwise.
The trend of innovating in very real, workable and highly profitable way that is closely intertwined with green initiatives is not new, nor is a flash in the pan. This is just the beginning -- first WalMart, then the world.