A new model for identifying emerging technologies

Stephanie F. Hughes


Today, the complexity of so many emerging technologies requires an
understanding of adjacent technologies often originating from multiple industries. Technology sequence analysis has been used by organizations, governments and industries to help make sense of the many variables impacting the evolution of technologies. This technique relies heavily on the input of experts who can offer perspectives on the status of current technologies
while also highlighting the potential opportunities in the future. However, the volume and speed at which scientific research is accelerating is making it nearly impossible for even the most knowledgeable expert to stay current with research in their own industries. Today however, the use of big data search tools can help identify emerging trends around disruptive technologies
well before many of the experts have fully grasped the impact of these technologies. Despite the fear of many in the intelligence community that these tools will make their jobs obsolete, we expect that the value of the intelligence expert will increase given their unique knowledge of relevant data sources and how to connect the data in meaningful ways to derive value for the firm. We propose a new forecasting model that incorporates a combination of technology
sequencing analysis and big data tools within the organization while also leveraging experts from across the open innovation spectrum. This new model, informed by current client engagements, has the potential to create significant competitive advantages for organizations as they benefit from expanded search breadth, search depth and search speed all while leveraging a range of internal and external experts to make sense of the rapidly changing
technological landscape confronting their environment.


Big data analytics, competitive intelligence, emerging technology, open innovation, technology sequence analysis

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