Is innovation random? by chance? perhaps.
But we can definitely plan chance and therefore I would argue that we can plan innovation. “Beware of random collisions with unusual suspects. Unless, of course, if you want to learn something new (an idea taken from here).” Colliding with unusual suspects, people, fields and going somewhere we normally wouldn’t is something we can plan and something we can actively be doing.
How to include it in our process? I’m not sure yet, but a starting point might be to adopt truly random practises (which are therefore unbiased). We could narrow down which paths to follow using a site like this: http://www.random.org/
Furthermore we can not only plan it, but perhaps lay the groundwork for innovation for later. I have been a big believer in asking questions about the future. Big questions which are not possible to answer now (due to technology, infrastructure etc) but might well be in the future. By collecting these questions we may look back on them and find they’re significantly easier to answer – finding innovation planned from years ago.