Craftsmanship is not always synonymous with innovation
We believe this is a mistake that results from confusion between innovation and technological progress.
Technological progress is based on improving methods (for example, increasing the handling capacity of microprocessors), which generate new possibilities (for example, the use of video processing).
Innovation begins with considering an identified need (for example, the generation of renewable energy). Methods are then undertaken to meet this need, sometimes using technological progress, but more often than not by finding new ways or new applications for existing technologies, techniques or materials.
When defined in this way innovation describes the job of a craftsman perfectly, as they strive to improve their work – sometimes marginally, based on their experience, sometimes with radical change – in order to achieve perfection in their creation, or to invent other works yet to be realised. Top chefs, Ferrari engineers and master luthiers are all innovators. Although cellos always have a similar shape, infinite details of supreme technique and expertise are what makes the difference: the choice of the wood and how it is cut and sanded, the composition of the varnish, the resting time after it has been glued, etc. Despite all our technological advances, it is this that makes Stradivarius (1644-1737) an unrivalled innovator.
Let’s not forget that craftsmanship is still a means of human production, in other words a way through which we are constantly seeking to find meaning in our actions.