16.7.13

Imitation as Innovation -> Shanzhai (山寨)


Since taking a course about product innovation a couple of years ago, I have been fascinated by the idea of Shanzhai as a source of product development. Shanzhai (Chinese: 山寨; pinyin: shānzhài) refers to Chinese imitation and pirated brands and goods, particularly electronics. Literally "mountain village" or "mountain stronghold", the term refers to the mountain stockades of regional warlords or bandits, far away from official control. 

If you are interested in how you can use Shanzhai thinking to aid your product design and fuel innovation, then the above talk from SxSW will be of interest. Check out some great examples of Shanzhai production here.