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The Cost versus Innovation Paradox

I was talking recently with the CIO of a pharmaceutical company, who told me that one drug can cost more than $4 billion to produce. I found that number to be a tad bit staggering, so I asked him to explain. He told me that the R&D group puts a large number of drugs into production at one time because the team knows that most of the drugs will fail at some point in the R&D process. The one drug that does survive will more than compensate for the R&D costs, so the overall budget allows for all of that failure. In order to innovate, pharmaceutical executives figure, they need to build waste and failure into their process.

That got me thinking about CIOs and the imperative they face to drive innovation while ...

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