The degree of development in the technical capability of many new devices and materials over their predecessors often is in multiples of improvement. These gains in performance are so great that they abruptly and drastically alter the means, effects, time, or costs of doing things. Thus, they disturb, for better or worse, existing practices, institutions, and human activities. The rapidity of introduction of technical successors seems to be increasing in many fields. Therefore, each technology concept tends to have a shorter marketplace life because of prompt challenge from a new and superior technology. The conclusion is that widespread awareness of the growing force of technology and increasing concern over its impact means that forecasting of technological development and consequences is absolutely essential in many managerial decision situations. Examples cover e.g. identification of directions and targets for a R and D project, monitoring of a given area by a public agency, and evaluation of the future competitive situation for a company. This paper gives a brief introduction to the field of technological forecasting especially in relation to the strategic planning process as the essential phase where decisions concerning introduction of new technology are taken in companies. It includes as well a description of the problems related to the marketing area and of methods applicable in practising technological forecasting.
Technology Forecasting; Statistics; HHÅ forskning
Main Research Area:
Workshop on Technology and Innovation Management: Trends in Theory and Research Methods, The Aarhus School of Business, 1997