Plans and planning have a long and checkered history. In their commentaries, Ettlie (this volume) and Miller and Osborn (this volume) take rather different views on the need for planning in innovative projects. In this commentary, we take the position that innovation requires constraints. These constraints induce certain risk factors that warrant attention, such as oversystemization. By the same token, they produce conditions, including social conditions that make sustained innovation possible. Based on these observations, some potential directions for future research are discussed.