“Disruption” is a buzzword that cropped up in 2011. According to Wikipedia, a disruptive innovation is an innovation that helps create a new market and value network, and eventually goes on to disrupt an existing market and value network, displacing an earlier technology. The term is used in business and technology to describe innovations that improve a product or service in unexpected ways, typically first by designing for a different set of consumers in the new market and later by lowering prices in the existing market.

Lucy Bernholz, a managing director at Arabella Advisors, who writes about trends on her blog, Philanthropy2173, says Clayton Christensen, a Harvard business professor, began the trend with his classic management books that outline what he labeled disruptive innovation. “This is the kind of thinking that launches whole new industries rather than just ‘new and improved’ products,” she writes. Christensen has gone on to write books on how to “disrupt” the healthcare system and elementary and secondary education.