By Jim Euchner, VP, Global Innovation, Goodyear; Editor-in-Chief, Research-Technology Management (RTM)
“Well something’s lost, but something’s gained In living every day.”
—Joni Mitchell, “Both Sides Now”
This is an optimistic issue. In it, you will read about a wide variety of ways in which digitalization will improve the practice of R&D. Ted Farrington, in his summary article, “On the Impact of Digitalization on R&D,” gives a broad view of the changes we will see. He looks at the three major trends discussed in this issue—virtual experimentation and simulation, digital collaboration, and big data—through the lens of the four scenarios for the future explored in the IRI2038 program. His introduction to the issue makes clear not only that much is possible, but also that there are many harbingers of the future in what we see happening today.
Veterans of IRI meetings are largely familiar with our brand, our value statement, our mission and, in general, who we are. They recognize that what we offer is unique, that the value gained by attending our meetings is unparalleled in terms of gaining high level contacts, networking with people who face similar challenges across every industry, and learning (as well as creating) genuine best practices in a field where best practices are tough to pin down. A few of these veterans are aware of the organizational modifications we’re currently undertaking, but most are not.
IRI is changing.
Conferences offer an opportunity to learn many things you otherwise wouldn’t learn. They do this simply by exposing you to ideas and people you might not otherwise interact with but which may share things in common with your line of work. Most conferences focus on a particular industry or specific trade within an industry. The Industrial Research Institute (IRI) is different. Where most associations or societies address the issues of a particular industry, IRI addresses the complex variety of issues associated with a job function that spans all industries: how to manage the research and development (R&D) function.
By Greg Holden, Business Writer & Social Media Manager, IRI
As an American with a non-American spouse, I hold that unique position of being called out when I am not speaking proper English. In its place, I am told, is “American Midwest English,” a form of easily understood mumbling—if you also happen to be American. For instance, I was asked once if my car was in the parking lot outside a friend’s place where we were gathering, I responded with a shrug, saying that it “should be.” Only it came out, as it does for many Americans, “shu-be.” My non-American spouse, who was there with me, smiled and sang the words “shoo-be-doobie-dooo.” She was very amused with herself.
By Greg Holden, Business Writer & Social Media Manager, Industrial Research Institute
The research working groups at the Industrial Research Institute (IRI) take a good, hard look at how they, the practitioners, not academics or theoreticians, approach the everyday management of technology innovation management at large technology companies. These members are on the front lines, doing the real work of managing R&D at some of the world’s largest, most innovative companies. The scholars and subject matter experts who are attracted to IRI, and who volunteer their time to provide support to these working groups, are also interested in the practical applications of their theories at real companies. This is the IRI crowd, and it is vibrant. So when we at IRI see a trend in our web and content analytics, we pay attention. Based on 2016 data, a few trends stood out. Continue reading