Ensuring a technological lead

Technologien frühzeitig erkennen, Nutzenpotenziale systematisch bewerten
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Fraunhofer publication “Technologien frühzeitig erkennen, Nutzenpotenziale systematisch bewerten” available for free download

More and more technologies offer companies opportunities for developing new products, speeding up processes or creating innovations. In the book “Technologien frühzeitig erkennen, Nutzenpotenziale systematisch bewerten”, Fraunhofer IAO presents methods, models and semantic tools for recognizing technological developments at an early stage and systematically assessing any benefits they may offer.

Companies that identify technological trends and the potential offered by new technologies at an early stage not only enjoy an essential competitive advantage, they also lay the foundations for innovation. The challenge businesses face is how to sift the ever-increasing range of new technological developments flooding onto the market so they can pick out and evaluate the technologies pertinent to them. Issued as the final report of a research project entitled “syncTech - synchronisierte Technologieadaption als Treiber der strategischen Produktinnovation” (“syncTech – synchronized technology adaptation as a driver of strategic product innovation”), the book “Identifying technologies early, evaluating potential benefits systematically” describes the latest methods, organizational models and semantic tools for information gathering and storage. These help companies to identify technologies and technological developments at an early stage, and enable them to systematically evaluate associated potential benefits in a corporate context. Alongside the results of the syncTech research project, the publication also features field reports from selected companies such as Eisenmann SE, Festo AG, Alfred Kärcher GmbH & Co. KG and Schnaithmann Maschinenbau GmbH.

Identifying potential through semantic search and collaborative information storage

The process of technology adaptation is explained in detail with reference to the following phases:

  • Establishing a search strategy for seeking out technological developments
  • Methodical support and definition of criteria for evaluating these technologies
  • Creation of key storage elements and structures for retaining relevant information

Key aspects of this process are semantic search and the collaborative storage of technology-relevant information in technology wikis. Integrating semantic search into the technology adaptation process enables companies to draw on countless web-connected sources of information efficiently and continuously. In addition, company-specific technology data sheets can be stored and maintained using technology wikis. These two key aspects were fleshed out in the syncTech research project, which examined methodological approaches and IT support options for each.

The book “Technologien frühzeitig erkennen, Nutzenpotenziale systematisch bewerten” (“Identifying technologies early, evaluating potential benefits systematically”) can be ordered in print form from the IAO Shop at a cost of 39 euros, or can be downloaded as an e-book free of charge.