Technology and Innovation Management

Fraunhofer IAO


  • Univ.-Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil. Joachim Warschat

    Univ.-Prof. Dr.-Ing. habil.
    Joachim Warschat

    Head of Business Unit
    Technology and Innovation Management


    Fraunhofer IAO
    Nobelstraße 12
    70569 Stuttgart, Germany

    • Phone +49 711 970-2081

Nanotechnology in Hessen
Uses of Nanotechnology in Environmental Technology in Hessen

Ideas for success © Fraunhofer IAO

Using New Technologies to Forge a Path to Tomorrow's Innovations

One of the essential foundations for creating a successful company over the long term is to identify technological trends from an early stage and to exploit the opportunities that new technologies offer for product innovations. However, factors such as the hugely dynamic nature of technological progress make it increasingly difficult for companies to comprehensively identify technology-related opportunities and to harness them in a goal-oriented manner. A key prerequisite for successful technology development therefore lies in the ability of an organization to rapidly and efficiently align the requirements of the market with the potential offered by new technologies and to integrate the results in its own products and processes.

The methods and organizational solutions developed in the Technology and Innovation Management business unit to improve and synchronize research, innovation and technology development processes have been shown to trigger success in the market: companies whose technology development capabilities have been properly organized achieve higher growth, increased profitability and an enhanced competitive edge.

The Technology and Innovation Management business unit focuses on the following key topics:

  • Developing and implementing innovation and technology strategies
  • Increasing organizations' capacity for innovation
  • Organizing innovation and research and development (R&D) effectively and efficiently using lean processes
  • Identifying, evaluating and exploiting new technologies
  • Setting up and supporting technology and innovation networks
  • Intellectual property: IP for innovation
  • IT support for R&D, technology and innovation management

We respond rapidly and professionally to our customers' needs by carrying out projects to enhance technology and innovation management. To do this, we draw on expertise from a wealth of research activities dealing with the development of scientifically-based innovative concepts, while also utilizing the experience we have acquired from comparable projects in which we developed application-oriented methods and tools. We are also fortunate to have access to an extensive range of research within the Fraunhofer network, which allows us to exploit specific skills and synergies.



The Technology and Innovation Management business unit develops strategies, methods and concepts that support companies in identifying and evaluating new technologies. This provides the basis for designing future research, development and innovation processes in a more practical and effective manner.

We achieve this in two ways: firstly, by employing a tried-and-tested method of technology and innovation management that has already been successfully deployed in various companies and organizations and, secondly, by incorporating the very latest findings from applied research and merging both these resources into practical, workable solutions.

We primarily focus on the following fields of application:

Developing strategies
Finding the right strategy for innovation, technology, research and development makes all the difference. It provides you with a distinct competitive advantage and opens up long-term market opportunities for your company.

Boosting capacity for innovation
Increasing a company's ability to innovate helps secure growth and profitability. It can only be achieved by ensuring that all the necessary pre-requisites for fostering this ability have been put in place throughout the company's entire innovation process.

Organizing R&D structures and cooperative alliances
A sustainable and future-oriented organizational structure in the field of research and development with the "right" cooperation management should ensure efficient innovation and R&D processes while meeting the demands of increasingly global competition.

Developing IT tools
Successful innovation and R&D management depends on a continuous IT process chain that stretches from the original idea and design concept right through to the successful product.

Identifying and exploiting technology potential
New technologies are generally the driving force behind the development and launch of new products, processes and services. That is why it is so important for companies to identify the technologies and trends that are relevant to them from an early stage and to correctly assess their potential.

Discovering resource-efficient technologies
Emerging technologies (i.e. those technologies that are on the verge of entering the market) and new materials make it possible to offer products and services in a more resource-efficient manner.

Building up innovation networks
Innovation networks are a tried-and-tested instrument in the field of pre-competitive research. There are two reasons for this: firstly, they enable the pooling of expertise and experience and, secondly, they give companies the opportunity to integrate critical issues from an early stage.

Professional IP management
Every innovative company knows that one of the keys to its success is how well it manages its intellectual property (IP).


Innovative companies require an information infrastructure capable of supporting them throughout the development, production, sales and utilization of their products. This includes factors such as the integrated deployment of CAD, distributed product development using PDM systems, well-chosen system architectures, and methods and tools for cost-oriented product development. Our information and presentation centers offer companies the opportunity to learn more about a broad range of systems and solutions. This enables our customers to cherry-pick the most suitable system environment for their technology and innovation management processes from among all the components available on the market.

PDM Information Center
PDM/PLM systems are the backbone of a seamless IT support process for product development. They manage all of a product's technical data and documents throughout its entire life cycle.


We engage in a wide variety of research projects to develop and test new methods and innovative procedures for technology and innovation management. Many of our projects are commissioned by funding partners such as the European Union, the German federal ministry of education and research (BMBF) and the Land of Baden-Württemberg. We use the results of these research activities to enhance the work we perform on behalf of our customers.

We are currently engaged in numerous areas of research, including the following:

Networking and open innovation
With increasing global competition in ever more closely-linked markets, the pressure is building on companies to provide new, better-quality and increasingly customer-specific services in shorter and shorter time frames.

Many companies are still failing to tailor their products to the specific needs of individual customer groups, even though there is no longer any doubt that men and women, young and old and people from different cultures rate the benefits of many products in entirely different ways.

Technology foresight and technology adaptation
In virtually all branches of industry, technological skills and the deployment of new technologies are crucial factors that help companies to maintain a competitive edge. Regardless of whether the technologies form part of the products themselves or are required for their production, a company's capacity to innovate in this area is directly linked to its ability to develop itself – or sometimes even to stay in business.

Emerging Technologies
The projects we carry out for public-sector and industry clients require us to conduct global searches for technology trends in order to identify new technological developments.

IT tools and search tools for technology management
Forward-looking technology management requires a continuous deployment of personnel and resources.

Value creation architectures / business model innovation
Success in the marketplace is not solely dependent on the development and implementation of technology. It is equally important to design business models that are tailored to the technology involved in each case.

R&D of the future: trends, challenges and opportunities
The very best ideas, concepts and products do not come to maturity by being left »on the back burner«, but rather through constant exchanges with other company departments and with entities outside the company itself.

Collaborative Engineering and Product Lifecycle Management 2.0
Fast-changing competitive conditions in global markets increasingly call for cross-company collaboration between partners, customers and suppliers.


The Technology and Innovation Management business unit is organized in the following teams:

Technology Management
In the Technology Management Competence Team, we conduct interdisciplinary research into how companies and organizations can strategically anchor the selection and deployment of new technologies within their organization and set up an effective technology management system.

Innovation Management
One of the key tasks of the Innovation Management Competence Team is to develop methods and tools that can be used to measure and evaluate the capacity for innovation exhibited by companies and research institutions.

R&D Management
The R&D Management Competence Center features an interdisciplinary team of engineers and economists who are engaged in developing solutions for the future-oriented structuring of innovation in research and development.

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