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Technology Strategy and Innovation: The Use of Derivative Strategies in the Aerospace Industry

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Strategy has become an increasingly important theme within the management of innovation. This is reflected in the increasing amount of attention given to topics such as technology strategy within the innovation literature. However research into technology strategy has tended to focus on technology acquisition rather than technology exploitation. This paper focuses on one often neglected way in which companies can exploit the technological resources at their disposal, namely through the use of a derivative strategy where new technology is combined with old products or parts of old products in order to develop new products. The paper explores this type of strategy by means of a case study from the commercial jet engine sector of the aerospace industry. The case study provides an opportunity not only to explore the nature of derivative strategies in detail it also highlights the benefits, both direct and indirect, to be gained from this type of strategy as a means of exploiting an organisation's technological resources. The paper shows how a derivative strategy can contribute to the broader strategic goals of companies in technology based industries through strategies designed to ensure the most effective utilisation of the technology base.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Nottingham Trent University 2: Civil Aviation University of China

Publication date: 2004-12-01

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