They have cited the example of several tribes who could achieve progress by borrowing the cultural elements from the other groups. It takes very long time for a society to achieve progress if it fails to get profited by the achievements of others. For example, the Maori people of New Zealand became civilised within one hundred years by borrowing many cultural elements from others. Thus, according to the diffusionists, the source of social change is to be found in cultural diffusion. 2. According to the inventionists, the source of social change is to be found in the inherent capacity of the people to make inventions.
They have said that inventions constitute the major source of social change. Invention, whether in the field of social organisation or the cultural framework, refers to the rearrangement of known traits into new patterns or configurations. These inventions, whether material or non-material, have led to profound social changes.
The invention of electricity, for example, has led to astounding changes in the fields of industry, agriculture, communication, transport and so on. Inventionists have argued that it is wrong to assume that social change always takes place due to cultural diffusion. They have criticised the argument of diffusionists that many of the elements of South American culture have been borrowed from India, Egypt, Jawa, Polynesia and other places. They have contended that people are capable of initiating changes on their own.