Diffusion of Invasions

Synonyms: technology development, technology implementation, innovation spread, technology introduction, innovation adoption

Diffusion of invasions is a theory that seeks to explain how, why, and at what rate new ideas and technology spread.




'spread like wildfire'

Diffusion is difficult to measure because human networks and pathways of perception are complex and varied. It is extremely difficult, if not impossible, to measure what drives innovation.


Diffusion theories can never account for all variables, and therefore might miss critical predictors of adoption. This variety of variables has also led to inconsistent results in research, reducing heuristic value.


The one-way information flow, from sender to receiver, is another weakness of this theory. In complex environments where the adopter receives information from many sources and returns feedback to the sender, a one-way model is insufficient and multiple communication flows need to be examined.


  1. Inconsistency
  2. Impossible to measure
  3. Missing critical predictors
  4. One-way information flow
  5. Insufficient model
  6. Unpredictability

If we consider innovation as the invention of something absolutely new and without “pieces” of things that came before, no human being has ever innovated. It turns out that innovation is much more a transformation process than of creation process. And understanding that, I was able to resolve my conflicts as a designer
— Fellype Nascimento, Product Designer

share the term