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Emerging technology-evaluation methodology: with application to micro-electromechanical systems

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3 Author(s)
B. Benson ; Sch. of Inf. Technol. & Eng., George Mason Univ., Fairfax, VA, USA ; A. P. Sage ; G. Cook

A triple-gateway methodology for evaluating emerging technologies at a very early stage of their development, to avoid costly investments that have little promise, is proposed and applied to four cases of microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). The methodology postulates that a technology must pass through three gateways to become commercially or socially worthwhile: a market gateway, a systems management gateway, and a technology gateway. The relevant issues for each of these gateways are examined. In the market gateway analysis, new users, new skepticism about `improved' performance characteristics, requirements for behavior adjustment by the user, competitive technologies, unpredictable technological developments, and legal barriers are examined. In systems management gateway analysis, the organizational structure of the firm is considered. For the technology gateway, four elements of technology uncertainty, namely, innovativeness, number of constituent technologies, manufacturing difficulties, and institutional changes required to introduce the new technology, are discussed

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management  (Volume:40 ,  Issue: 2 )