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MI0040 – TECHNOLOGY MANAGEMENT

DRIVE: WINTER 2016


MBA– (SEM 4)

Q.NO.1.

Describe the concept of technology management. Explain the various stages of strategic technology
management system (STMS).

ANS.

Concept of technology management

Technology management means using new technology to create competitive advantage which is quite a
difficult job, partly due to differing cultures in a company. Technology is often thought to be solely the
domain of the scientific and engineering personnel of an organisation. Yet, successful business use of
technology requires strategic decisions about technology by personnel in other functional areas, such as
production, marketing, sales, finance, and so on. Thus, the two cultures – technical and functional –
need to be bridged, and management should integrate technology strategy with business strategy. This
is the essence of technology management.

Explain the various stages of strategic technology management system (STMS).

The role of management in building competitive advantage for an organisation, depends on the
technology strategy. It is better to understand the intended strategy of general management. We
can see that there are three aspects of relationship between the management and technology
strategy. These are:

 The view of management of the impact of general management on the business and
business strategy.
 The management checks whether there is any chance of discerning the technology
strategy.
 The management checks whether there is any chance of discerning particular
orientation towards new markets, developing superior products and pursuing learning
curve and cost leadership.

The managers play an important role in the decision making process of the technology. The
decision making process involves many problems in sustaining and building competitive
advantage. In the case of competitive markets, technology intensity introduces the layer of
complexity.
Q.NO.2.

Define technological innovation.


Explain the different types of innovation on the basis of flexibility and in terms of offerings.

ANS.

Concept of technological innovation

Technology comprises of the methods, processes, and systems used to convert resources into
products, and innovation is the change in technology. Note that when technology and innovation
collaborate they give rise to technology-based innovation called as 'technological innovation'
which is widely used in the corporate world.
The success of a technological innovation depends on the diffusion of the innovation to those
who can use it effectively. We can define diffusion as the spread of a new idea such as product,
technology, service, or method from the moment of its invention or creation to its eventual
adoption by an increasing number of users, in different situations.

Types of innovation on the basis of flexibility and in terms of offerings

Innovation – Technology relationship


The importance of new technologies and innovations for competitiveness and growth is a
platitude among managers, policy makers, and researchers. However, not all new technologies
and innovations are successful. Given the various technological opportunities and types of
innovations from which organisations can potentially choose, it is desirable to know which
innovative activities and technologies are most clearly related with improved competitiveness
and growth. Perhaps, understanding of the factors that make the success of new technologies
and innovative activities is more important than anything else.

Technology-based innovation and management


The challenge of management in business organisations is to develop and remain competitive
in the market. This enables the organisations to meet their objectives, which can be profit
generation, growth, increased market share, or increased employee compensation and job
security.

Organisations can be successful in market competition when they offer the latest, better, and
cheaper products and services that their customers need, and that their competitors cannot
provide. Competitive advantage can be defined as the ability to design and deliver things more
cheaply and better, or to design new products. It consists of two dimensions. First, relative
dimension can be referred as the competitive advantage derived from the activities of
organisations compared to those of their competitors. Second, absolute dimension says that
there has to be a market for what the organisation does. Technological innovation has an
important job both in improving productivity and developing new products and services, and in
providing relative and absolute advantages. Undoubtedly, as we move towards what is called
the „knowledge economy‟, technological innovation will become the main priority for competition
in the twenty-first century. The management of technological innovation (MTI) is, therefore, an
essentially important activity.
Q.NO.3.

Briefly explain the guiding principles of technology management.

ANS.

Guiding principles of technology management

The innovative performance in an organisation is guided by a set of principles which help the
organisation to succeed in business.
Let us study the principles that guide innovative performance.

Innovation data compilation efforts should build on the way organisations assess the
effectiveness of their innovative activities.

Data collection should be communicative rather than being based only on theory. Also, the
burden on organisations should be minimised as much as possible.

While developing effective ways to quantify innovation in the business priority should be given
to the measurement of impact of rules and regulations on innovation. Some regulatory policies
may exclusively support innovation. Other policies may have the unintended consequence of
inhibiting innovation. Enhanced data on innovation are critical for evaluating the impact that
regulatory policies have on innovation.

Due to the nature of innovation and, in particular, the mutual nature of the innovative process,
there needs to be acceptance of qualitative and subjective measures. For example, measuring
the resources invested in and the results of collaboration may be very significant but also very
difficult, especially if such collaborations are informal or if the benefits are subject to spillovers.

Innovation measurement should not be stagnant, it should be continuously updated.


Measurement is a step by step process that needs to be considered not as a „project‟ but as an
ongoing „dialogue.‟ Learning and improvement are to be obtained from each stage of the
process. As new innovation data are compiled, they should be filtered and continually re-
evaluated for their cost- effectiveness and ability to push out the boundary of knowledge about
innovation and its impact on the economy. The government needs the support of the researcher
community in order to achieve this in a timely manner.

Innovation measures should be analysed at the enterprise, organisation, industry, national,


international and where possible, regional Ievels. Enhanced data on innovation should allow
industry and sector-specific analysis, recognising that innovation demonstrates itself differently
in different parts of the economy. Especially, international comparisons would help explain why
different countries are experiencing different economic growth rates.

A conventional approach should be taken to any new data compilation efforts by recognising
compromise between costs and potential benefits and considering resource and regulatory
issues. The execution of project trials to measure the costs and benefits of new data collection
efforts is encouraged. The costs of new data compilation include both direct program costs and
the cost burden imposed on possible survey respondents.

Q.NO.4.

With a neat diagram, explain the various stages of technology life cycle.

ANS.

Diagram

The technology life cycle (TLC) describes the costs and profits of a product from technological
development phase to market maturity to eventual decline. Research and development (R&D) costs
must be offset by profits once a product comes to market. Varying product lifespans mean that
businesses must understand and accurately project returns on their R&D investments based on
potential product longevity in the market.

Due to rapidly increasing rates of innovation, products such as electronics and pharmaceuticals in
particular are vulnerable to shorter life cycles (when considered against such benchmarks as steel or
paper). Thus TLC is focused primarily on the time and cost of development as it relates to the projected
profits. TLC can be described as having four distinct stages:

Explaining the stages

Research and Development - During this stage, risks are taken to invest in technological innovations. By
strategically directing R&D towards the most promising projects, companies and research institutions
slowly work their way toward beta versions of new technologies.
Ascent Phase - This phase covers the timeframe from product invention to the point at which out-of-
pocket costs are fully recovered. At this junction the goal is to see to the rapid growth and distribution
of the invention and leverage the competitive advantage of having the newest and most effective
product.

Maturity Stage - As the new innovation becomes accepted by the general population and competitors
enter the market, supply begins to outstrip demand. During this stage, returns begin to slow as the
concept becomes normalized.

Decline (or Decay) Phase - The final phase is when the utility and potential value to be captured in
producing and selling the product begins dipping. This decline eventually reaches the point of a zero-
sum game, where margins are no longer procured.

Q.NO.5.

a. Define technology transfer. Explain the steps involved in technology transfer process.
b. Explain the major categories of technology transfer

ANS.

Concept of technology transfer

Basically there are two ways of acquiring a new technology: either develop it or purchase it. The second
way of acquiring new technology, that is, purchasing a new technology, is commonly called "technology
transfer". In the process of technology transfer, there are sellers whom we call "transferors" or
"licensors” as well as buyers whom we call "transferees" or "licensees".
You must note that no transfer of technology can take place unless and until we put the technical
knowledge to use. We can not only include scientific or engineering items, but also some factors such as,
the manufacturing, marketing, distribution and customer service, in technology transfer.

Steps involved in technology transfer process

Complex, multi-step processes under both Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) and non-GMP have been
positively transferred. For transfer outside Switzerland, a specialist team follows a three-stage method:

1. Initiation - the options and objectives are agreed upon by all parties – planning of technology transfer
major plan, explanation of responsibilities, as well as planning and transfer of technical material;

2. Piloting - the process is tested in the lab and in small manufacture runs and broadly revised –
agreement with regulatory and quality standards; and

3. Sign-off - the jointly agreed process is accepted by all parties– production against conventional group
guidelines.
Major categories of technology transfer

Basically technology transfer is categorised into passive and active modes. The modes of technology
transfer refer to the transferor‟s role in the application of technology to solve the user‟s problem. The
technology transfer is called active, if the transfer methods assist the possible user in its application. In
active mode, the transfer process goes after the interpretation of the transmitted information, suggests
the user how to use the technology, or shows the applications of the technology for the apparent use.
However, there may be an intermediate mode also, known as semi-passive mode. In semi-passive mode,
the transfer activity is in the middles of the other two modes, that is, active and passive modes.

Q.NO.6.

Explain the technological impacts on different aspects of society.

ANS.

Technological impacts on society

We can define ‘environment impact analysis or assessment’ as an activity to identify, predict, interpret,
and pass information about the impact of an activity on human’s health and well-being.

The following are the EIA process steps:

1. The first step is to make a fast examination of the basic environmental resources – land, air, and
water. This is done at a macro level where the project is to be located. The scanning is performed to
evaluate the amount of fragility and exploitation of the resource base. The project and regional
environment is then related.

2. The second step is to separate the project zone.

3. The third step is to identify, assess, and define all the environmental attributes.

4. The fourth step is to rank environmental resources by their fragility, significance and quality.

5. The fifth step to carry out review on every aspect of effects of the proposed project on the identified
individual environmental resources available in the project zone.

6. The sixth step is to categorise the effects in a systematic order.

7. The seventh step is to prepare remedial plans for diminishing negative effects.
Guidelines on the scope of EIA
The following are the guidelines to be present in the EIA report:

The project proposed action should be described. The description includes a statement of its purpose,
and a description of all related technical information to offer a clear and complete understanding of the
proposed action. This also includes various materials, resources, and others involved.

The connection of the proposed activity to the land use plans, policies and controls in the affected area
or the project should be provided. It is required to understand the affected environment.

The important aspects which should be considered in detail are the possible impacts of the proposed
project on the environment.

Any possible negative environmental effect that cannot be avoided and addressing how each avoidable
impact will be diminished.

The connection between local short term uses of human’s environment and the maintenance of and
improvement of long term production.