50 Years of Change in Industrial Research and Technology Management

By Charles F. Larson

(This throwback article originally appeared in the 2007 January-February issue of RTM as part of the journal’s 50th anniversary.)

Leaving Purdue in the spring of 1958, I had no idea that an organization called the Industrial Research Institute (IRI) had just launched the first issue of a new journal called Research Management (RM). The chair of the Editorial Advisory Board explained that this new publication was initiated because “we need one place to turn for the latest ideas regarding research management.” RM was, of course, sent to all Representatives of IRI, but it was also intended for use by research leaders in university and government labs, with an annual subscription price of $7.50. At that time, industrial R&D investment was $3.6 billion, total R&D investment in the United States was $10 billion, and the average salary of an R&D professional was $9,000. Continue reading

The Management of Research When Research-Technology Management Was Born

By Michael F. Wolff, Executive Editor, RTM (1983-2010)

(This throwback article appeared in RTM twice, first in 1983 and again in 2007 as part of the journal’s 50th anniversary. This year marks the 60th year that RTM has been in continuous publication. #Happy60thRTM!)

In 1958, the industrial boom fueled by the technical advances of the World War II period was only temporarily interrupted by a recession year. The earlier dramatic research advances in computers, chemistry and electronics continued to contribute strongly to the growth of R&D management as a profession—one that brought with it concerns that resonate with those that confront the profession today.

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Advancing the State of Practice

By Jim Euchner, VP, Global Innovation, Goodyear, and RTM Editor-in-Chief

This issue begins RTM’s 60th continuous year of publication. Originally called Research Management, it was founded as a journal by and for practitioners of research and development in order to share lessons learned and build best practices. The journal, renamed Research-Technology Management in the 1980s, has now served several generations of R&D and innovation leaders, and it will help executives and practitioners manage through many changes in the future.

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Game Changing Innovations in the Spotlight

By Greg Holden, IRI Business Writer and Social Media Manager

If you were to think back on the last 75 years and compile a list of scientific and technological innovations that had the greatest impact on society, what would they be? Would you only think of the obvious things, like the moon landing and color television? Or perhaps you’re a techie who understands the significance of computer chips, transistors, and the video game Pong. Or maybe you value healthcare, focusing your list on disease eradication, vaccines, and DNA sequencing. Most of all, wouldn’t the mere compiling of this list make you realize that what our industries have done for us is something we may never fully understand or be able to repay? How can we recognize them for these brilliant contributions?

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Final #innovate2038 game roundup

By Jason Tester, IFTF, Innovate2038 Game-Master

Amazing #Innovate2038 community:

Three words: youallrock! The game ended at 9pm PT / midnight ET last night, with a final tally of 9,958 ideas from 543 players representing 53 countries. And this wasn’t just about quantity—we’re totally floored by the quality of the ideas and innovations, discussions and collaborations that you co-created over the past 36 hours to make the future.

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Innovate2038: Envisioning the future of R&D with global crowd-sourcing

By Greg Holden, IRI Business Writer

Over the past two days, people the world over brainstormed about the future of research and innovation on a game called Innovate2038. Developed by IRI and hosted on the Institute for the Future’s (IFTF) foresight game engine, the event flew out of the gates at 12:00 pm EST and didn’t let up for the full 36 hours of gameplay. Participants could play “cards”—short, 140-character ideas—in response to two questions: “How can new research and innovation practices lead the way in 2038?” and, “What obstacles and roadblocks will hold research and innovation back?” From there, participants could respond to each idea or play their own.

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The Millennial Challenge: Generational Leadership Expectations

By Greg Holden, Business Writer

Today’s business executives are still adjusting to the behavior of the rising generation of leaders. Whether called “Gen Y’ers,” “millennials,” or “the trophy generation,” these individuals bring with them an unprecedented approach to employment that often carries the negative moniker of entitlement. But these millennials do represent the next wave; people who, 15 to 20 years from now, will hold top posts in the world’s corporations.

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MIT study vindicates ‘Innovation Economy 2020’ initiative

By Ed Bernstein, President, Industrial Research Institute

Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) came to DC last Friday to deliver a report covering their research into our manufacturing sector. So what did they find? Unsurprisingly, they identified gaping holes in our industrial ecosystem that need to be filled with the right talent, the right infrastructure and the right incentives to make our manufacturing sector healthy again. Closely in line with IRI’s Innovation Economy 2020 initiative and position statement, the report offered solid data matching what IRI member companies have discussed at our meetings for at least a decade now. So what else did the MIT report provide that made it intriguing? For starters, it offered a useful comparison.

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Seventy-five years ago today…

By Ed Bernstein, President, Industrial Research Institute

SevCelebrate Impact Envision, IRIenty-five years ago today, the National Research Council (NRC) steering committee, led by Maurice Holland, Director, NRC’s Division of Engineering and Industrial Research, formed an association of companies to be called the Industrial Research Institute (IRI). It was the start of something great. Something that would change the industry – and the world that we live in – forever.

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An Anniversary in Honor of Industry

By Ed Bernstein, President, Industrial Research Institute

As we take off from the starting line of IRI’s anniversary year, we look back and recognize all that has been done by industry over the past three quarters of a century. From spaceships landing the first man on the moon using computer technology no more complicated than today’s handheld calculators to complex international space stations monitoring us from above with state-of-the-art equipment. From simple counting machines and vacuum tube monstrosities to today’s pocket-sized tablets processing more data per minute than the earliest computers could in a lifetime. The progress we all see and take for granted is what we are highlighting and honoring throughout IRI’s 75th anniversary in 2013: the legacy of industrial innovation.

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