Difference Wiki

Change vs. Innovation: What's the Difference?

Edited by Aimie Carlson || By Janet White || Published on December 28, 2023
Change refers to any alteration or modification, while innovation is the introduction of something new, especially novel ideas or methods.

Key Differences

Change encompasses any alteration, whether minor or major, in any context. While, innovation specifically implies introducing novel ideas or methods, often leading to improvements or advancements.
Changes can be small-scale or large-scale and may not always lead to significant improvements. Innovations, however, typically aim to bring substantial improvement or advancement in a field.
Change is a constant and regular aspect of life and business. Whereas, innovation is less frequent, often disruptive, and marks a departure from the traditional way of doing things.
Change can occur naturally or be driven by external factors, without a deliberate creative process. Meanwhile, innovation results from a deliberate process of creative thinking and problem-solving.
The goal of change might be adaptation or improvement, not necessarily novelty. Innovation aims for novelty, creating new value or solutions.

Comparison Chart


Any alteration or modification.
Introduction of new ideas or methods.


Can be minor or major.
Typically substantial and novel.


Regular and constant.
Less frequent and often disruptive.


Natural occurrence or external influence.
Creative process and problem-solving.


Adaptation, improvement, or response.
Novelty, new value, or solutions.

Change and Innovation Definitions


To make or become different.
The company changed its policies to be more eco-friendly.


A new method, idea, or product.
The electric car is an innovation that could reduce pollution.


To transform or convert.
The caterpillar changed into a butterfly.


The act of making changes in something by introducing new methods or ideas.
Their innovation in software design set new industry standards.


To replace something with something else.
She changed her shoes after the hike.


Introducing new methods, ideas, or products.
The smartphone was a major innovation in communication.


To exchange one thing for another.
He changed his concert ticket for a later date.


A novel addition or improvement in a field.
Implementing AI in healthcare was a significant innovation.


To alter one's approach or attitude.
He changed his mind about the job offer.


The process of translating an idea into a good or service.
Their innovation process led to a breakthrough in renewable energy.


To cause to be different; alter
We decided to change the color of the walls. You can't change the rules in the middle of the game.


The act of introducing something new.


To give a completely different form or appearance to; transform
The new homeowners changed the yard into a garden.


Something newly introduced.


Does change always lead to improvement?

Not necessarily; change can be neutral or even negative.

Is innovation always technology-related?

No, innovation can occur in any field, including business models, processes, etc.

Is all innovation a form of change?

Yes, innovation is a specific type of change that involves novelty.

Can a change be considered innovation if it's not novel?

No, innovation requires an element of novelty or uniqueness.

Can change occur without human intervention?

Yes, changes can be natural or spontaneous.

Can innovation occur in traditional fields?

Yes, innovation can occur in any field, traditional or modern.

Can a small modification be called an innovation?

It depends on the context and the impact of the modification.

Can changes be predictable?

Some changes are predictable, while others are not.

Is implementing an existing idea in a new way considered innovation?

Yes, if it brings novelty or improvement in that context.

Does innovation always require creativity?

Generally, yes, as it involves creating new methods or ideas.

Can change be reversed?

Some changes can be reversed, while others cannot.

Is innovation always a planned process?

Often, but not always; some innovations can be serendipitous.

Can change be gradual?

Yes, change can be either gradual or sudden.

Does innovation always solve problems?

Often, but some innovations are more about opportunity than problem-solving.

Are all innovations disruptive?

No, some innovations are incremental and not disruptive.

Can changes be insignificant?

Yes, some changes have minimal impact or significance.

Are innovations always widely accepted immediately?

No, innovations often face initial resistance or skepticism.

Does change always require external factors?

No, it can also be driven by internal factors or decisions.

Is adaptation a form of change?

Yes, adaptation involves changing to fit new conditions.

Is every new product an innovation?

Not necessarily; it must offer novelty or improved functionality.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.

Trending Comparisons

Popular Comparisons

New Comparisons