It's CONVERSATION around innovation - in the information technology sphere, since, for example, the transistor in '47 and chips in the 1950s - which has lead to ongoing, astounding further INNOVATION.
... Academic 'conversation' has a form ('conference-style' idea-sharing, lectures, publishing academic papers, etc.) that also develops (it happens over time via libraries, significantly). World University & School, with graduate student instructors in virtual worlds, for example, and professors' talks video-streamed there, that makes possible FURTHER innovative conversation - http://worlduniversity.wikia.com :).
And virtual worlds, for example, allow for both group-text-chat, where a document can be saved with multiple lines of reasoning (everyone having written at once:), and voice chat, - as well as video-streaming into virtual worlds; avatar-mediated virtual world communication adds something ... and you can group-build things out of virtual objects called prims in Second Life ... lots of ways to innovate conversationally with CONVERSATION ... At a fairly 'high' academic and scientific level, scaled to all languages, people might generate a LOT of innovation at World University and School and in virtual worlds ... not to mention via academic publishing ...
But it seems like there are a fair number of processes that get in the way of such conversations - everything from 'controlling processes' (knowledge discourses and money/media/educational systems) to lack of focus or access to teaching and learning resources among learners.
(http://scott-macleod.blogspot.com/2011/02/precipice-lake-its-conversation-around.html - February 15, 2011)