The strategic deployment and management of innovation and technology for competitive advantage constitutes the focal theme of this course. This theme is examined through an integrative framework that pulls together the various functional perspectives of operations, marketing, research and development, design and engineering. The course specifically addresses the technology-strategy connection in light of technological change and its management. The process of developing, selecting, implementing, transferring and managing product and process development and improvement, its role within the firm and its interface with operations are covered.
Course work will consist of reading, in-class discussions, and written individual and group reports. An industry analysis will be part of the group work. In addition each group will participate in a field project. Each group will present an oral and written presentation to class. Guest lecturers from industry will address the class periodically. Facility tours will be conducted as well on Fridays.
In addition to homework and an examination, students will work in groups on a field project. The project will represent a significant part of the learning and workload of the course. Teams of five students (one from a remote location) will undertake projects over about a 10-week period. The teams will act as consultants to the sponsoring company. A written report will be prepared for the company, and the teams will give a class and management briefing. The nature of the project will depend on each individual firm, but it will be important to determine the specific project focus within the first three to five weeks of the course.