Technoogy Forecasting

Topics: Forecasting, Technology, Technology forecasting Pages: 26 (7469 words) Published: August 27, 2013

Technological Forecasting
by
Jack R. Meredith and Samuel J. Mantel, Jr.
University of Cincinnati

Forecasting is hard, particularly of the future. [Anonymous]

Forecasting is like trying to drive a car blindfolded and following directions given by a person who is looking out the back window. [Anonymous]

Technology is the application of science or art. All projects rest on a technological base. They are concerned with using science and art to accomplish some goals. Indeed, most projects rest on a base formed by many technologies. When a project is initiated, decisions must be made about which of the relevant and available technologies to employ. At times, a choice must be made between beginning the project immediately, using currently available technologies, or delaying the project in order to adopt a superior technology that is expected but is not currently available.

In addition to technological choices made for the project itself, it may be necessary to forecast the technologies with which our technological choices and our project results will interact. Our systems must be reasonably compatible with those in the environment that do or will exist across their expected life.

Both reasons for forecasting technology go beyond the obvious need to plan for the technological future. Such planning may or may not be the subject of a special project. For many organizations, technological planning is an ongoing function of management. But whether planning is done as a routine or on a project basis, technological forecasting is required.

We define technological forecasting as the process of predicting the future characteristics and timing of technology. When possible, the prediction will be quantified, made through a specific logic, and will estimate the timing and degree of change in technological parameters, attributes, and capabilities.

As with idea generation, few project managers are engaged with projects at the point in the life cycle at which technological forecasting is normally done. Decisions made at this point, early in the life cycle, influence the subsequent course of the project. Whether implicit or explicit, the decision not to engage in technological forecasting assumes a static technological future. This is a false assumption, but in some cases the assumption is not damaging, We urge project managers, senior managers, and policymakers to make conscious decisions about engaging in technological forecasting, and we urge project managers to study and understand the importance of this process on project management.

We begin by discussing the nature of technological forecasting, its history, and how it has been used. We then survey the major techniques currently in use. Last, we consider how to choose an appropriate forecasting method, the limits of each method, and the general future of technological forecasting. Some of these models require an understanding of basic statistics to employ them, but not to comprehend their use and role.

B.4CHARACTERISTICS, HISTORY, AND IMPORTANCE OF TECHNOLOGICAL FORECASTING

Note that in the definition, technological forecasting is aimed at predicting future technological capabilities, attributes, and parameters. It is not an attempt to predict how things will be done. Nor is technological forecasting oriented toward profitability. That is, a technological capability or attribute can be forecast to be available at some time in the future, although society may not necessarily want or need the capability.

Consider the process of technological innovation. Many factors influence the progress and direction of technology. For example, science, organizational policy, organization structure, chance, need, and funding all play major roles in determining what technologies are likely to be available to us in the future.

Governmental decisions to support some...

Bibliography: 1 . ALLEN, T. J. Managing the Flow of Technology. Cambridge. MA: MIT Press, 1977.
2. ARMYTAGE, H., et at. Hidden Factors in Technology Change. NewYork: Pergamon Press, 1976.
3. AYRES, R. U. Technological Forecasting and Long Range Planning. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1969.
4. BEDWORTH, D. D. Industrial Systems: Planning, Analysis, Control. New York: Ronald Press, 1973.
5. BLOHM, H., and K. STEINBUCK. Technological Forecasting in Practice. Lexington, MA: Lexington Books, 1973.
6. BRIGHT, J. R. A Brief Introduction to Technological Forecasting. New York: Pergamon Press, 1972.
7. BRIGHT, J. R. Technological Forecasting for Industry and Government, Methods and Applications. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1968.
8. BRIGHT, J. R., and M.E.F SCHOEMAN. A Guide to Practical Technological Forecasting. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1980.
10. BROWNLIE, D. T "The Role of Technology Forecasting and Planning: Formulating Business Strategy." Industrial Management and Data Systems, Issue 2, 1992.
11. BURGER, P. C. "A Report on the Development of a Research Agenda for the Product Development and Management Association." Journal of Product Innovation Management, Mar. 1989.
12. CETRON, M. J. Technological Forecasting: A Practical Approach. Technology Forecasting Institute, 1969.
13. CETRON, M. J., and C. A. RALPH. Industrial Applications of Technological Forecasting. New York: Wiley-Interscience, 1971.
14. CHAMBERS, J. C., S. K. MULLICK, and D. D. SMITH. "How to Choose the Right Forecasting Technique." Harvard Business Review, July-Aug. 1971.
16. FONTELU, E. "Industrial Applications of Cross Impact Analysis." Long Range Planning, Aug. 1976.
18. GECKELE, G. G. "Evaluating Industrial Technological Forecasting." Long Range Planning, Aug. 1976.
19. GARDE, V. D., and R. R. PATEL. "Technological Forecasting for Power Generation-A Study Using the Delphi Technique." Long Range Planning, Aug. 1985.
20. GOTTINGER, H. W. "A Strategic Management Decision Support Tool for Technology Management." International Journal of Technology Management, Issue 2, 1989.
21. HENRY, B. Forecasting Technological Innovation. Norwell, MA: Kluwer Academic, 1991.
22. JANTSCH, E. Technological Planning and Social Futures. Cassell, 1972.
23. JONES, H., and B. L. TWISS. Forecasting Technology for Planning Decisions. New York: Macmillan, 1978.
24. KLEIN, H. E., and R. E. LINNEMAN. "The Use of Scenarios in Corporate Planning-Eight Case Histories." Long Range Planning, Oct. 1981.
25. KLOPFENSTEIN, B. C. "Forecasting Consumer Adoption of information Technology and Services-Lessons from Home Video Forecasting." Journal of the ASIS, Jan. 1989.
26. LANFORD, H. E., and L. V. IMUNDO. "Approaches to Technological Forecasting as a Planning Tool," Long Range Planning, Aug. 1974,
27. LEE, J
28. LINESTONE, H. H., and M. TRUOTT. The Delphi Method: Techniques and Applications. Reading, MA: Addison Wesley, 1975.
30. MANSFIELD, E. Industrial Research and Technological Innovation. New York: Norton, 1968.
34. MARTINO, J. P. "Technological Forecasting-An Overview." Management Science, Jan. 1980.
36. MITCHELL, V. W. "Using Delphi to Forecast in New Technology industries." Marketing Intelligence and Planning, Issue 2, 1992.
39. ROSEGGER, G. The Economics of Production and Innovation, 2nd ed. New York: Pergamon Press, 1986.
40. SCHNAARS, S. P. "Where Forecasters Go Wrong." Across the Board, Dec. 1989.
41. TCHIJOV, I., and E. NOROV. "Forecasting Methods for CIM Technologies." Engineering Costs and Production Economics, Aug. 1989.
42. Tryckare, Lore of Flight. Gothenburg, Sweden: Cagner, 1970.
43. U.S. Bureau of the Census. Statistical Abstract of the United States: 1987, 107th ed. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1986.
44. U.S. Government. Technological Trends and National Policy, Including the Social Implications of New Inventions. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1937.
45. VANSTON, L. K., R. C. LENZ, and R.S. WOLFF. "How Fast Is New Technology Coming?" Telephony, Sept. 18, 1989.
47. WEDLEY, W. C. "New Uses of Delphi in Strategy Formulation." Long Range Planning, Dec. 1977.
49. WILLIS, R. E. "Statistical Consideration in the Fitting of Growth Curves." Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Oct. 1979.
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Forecasting Report Essay
  • Forecasting Demand Essay
  • Aldi Forecasting Essay
  • Forecasting Methodology Essay
  • Forecasting Paper
  • Essay on Qualitative Forecasting
  • What Is Forecasting Ques 1 Essay
  • Forecasting Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free