Management Of Technology And Innovations

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Management of Technology and innovations

Technology is the means by which organizations convert input to output. Inputs include raw materials, human labor, financial capital, and various skills and competencies. Outputs include valuable goods, products, and services. The conversion process might rely on simple procedures, such as youth squeezing fruit for their lemonade stand, or highly elaborate and interrelated systems, such as the production of advanced pharmaceutical or aerospace materials. The degree of technological sophistication employed by an organization has been modeled by theorists such as Joanne Woodward, in her studies of technological complexity, Eric Trist, in his studies of socio technical integration, Charles Per row, in technological analyzability and variability, James Thompson, in technological interdependence, and Philip Anderson and Mike Tuchman, in technological change. Technology is seen as riskier when it is more complex, disconnected, variable, and no routine, intensive, and radical. Together they sketch a multidimensional array of technological risk-facing organizations.

Environmental Scanning and Technology

Environmental Scan



Internal Analysis   

   External Analysis

/ \      

           / \

Strengths   Weaknesses   

   Opportunities   Threats


SWOT Matrix

Internal Analysis

Overall, technology presents organizations with various types of risk which are usually internal such as

Administrative and knowledge risk

Level of product/process and profitability risk

Level of individual and job risk

An example of a societal risk from high-risk technology that affects organizational environments would be the cases of nuclear, biochemical, or nana technological business. Charles Per row and Scott Sagan contrast high reliability theory—predicting that redundancy, controls, safety checks, and learning mechanisms can mitigate risk—from the normal accidents theory—arguing that tightly coupled and increasingly complex systems cannot be completely controlled by bounded rational and politically motivated actors and can even escalate small glitches into major failures. The thrust of the reasoning is that failure that can arise “normally” in systems by virtue of the interdependent nature of the components of the system itself, concluding that as technologies become more complex, the probability of tragic results increases. This logic has been subsequently extended to other organizational endeavors such as information technology, computer viruses, health care, large-scale construction projects, space exploration, and highway design and regulation.

Industry-level technological risk affects organizational markets, for instance, in the cases of industry standards. Disruptive or quantum technological shifts alter the dominant designs that are accepted in the marketplace, whereas sustaining or incremental advances in existing technology merely introduce improvements in its architecture or functionality. Scholars such as Clayton Christensen and Rebecca Henderson modeled this impact to show that emerging technology can displace whole industries such as vacuum tubes or traditional photography and that the leaders in an old technology, unless they reinvent themselves and adapt to the forces of change, likely fail to become leaders or even survive in the new context. Unfortunately, firms typically have many resources invested in the old technology to the extent that it is difficult for them to abandon historical areas of strength, and they are often less knowledgeable about newer technologies and lack the capability to learn how to use them. As a result, high-risk technologies may place an industry's viability in doubt.

External Analysis

One of the reasons why technology is sometimes perceived as ...
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