Conference Theme, Streams and Special Sessions

Management of Applied R&D: Connecting high value solutions with future markets

The R&D Management Conference 2014 has the key theme Management of Applied R&D: Connecting high value solutions with future markets. This theme is based on an increasing integration of R&D, market needs and user requirements in industrial organisations.
It also reflects the mission statement of Fraunhofer, the host organisation of the 2014 conference. Within Fraunhofer, the Competence Center R&D Management provides its industrial and scientific expertise to make the conference a unique and unprecedented event.

Thematic Streams

The streams are meant to cover a relatively wide area in the topic of R&D Management. Abstracts in these thematic streams are selected based on their scientific excellence and the level of innovativeness especially considering their industrial relevance. If appropriate, the selection of a special session is recommended for abstract and paper submission.

R&D Organisation and Efficiency

This stream includes organisational aspects as well as mechanisms influencing the efficiency of R&D processes, programmes or projects.

Strategic R&D and Technology Management

Topics in this stream range from strategic technology analyses at the front-end of R&D, R&D programme planning up to the development or implementation of R&D strategies.

Innovative IT Systems in R&D

Within this stream, all topics related to the application of innovative Information Technologies (IT) to enhance R&D.

Special Sessions

For abstract and paper submissions, streams are complemented by special sessions. Each special session is chaired in collaboration between an academic and an industrial organisation. This concept aims at considering both, academic excellence and industrial relevance for the discussion of each paper. Each special session will be initiated through a short presentation from the industrial partner highlighting the industrial relevance of the topic.

R&D Management in Emerging Economies

In recent years the economic growth in emerging economies was tremendous - which goes hand in hand with a considerable increase in R&D investments. E.g. Turkish industry has nowadays become more than an extended workbench, but an internationally significant production and development site.

The Special Session »R&D Management in Emerging Economies« targets to combine articles that analyse special challenges and research findings in the thematic area of managing R&D (organization, collaboration, human resources, intellectual property, pre-competitive research etc.). Beyond the inclusion of R&D Management in Emerging Economies, a special focus is set on R&D Management in Turkey.

Session chairs: Mehmet Kürümlüoglu, Fraunhofer IAO
Prof. Christian Berggren, Linköping University
Industrial partner: İffet İyigün Meydanlı, Arςelik S.A.

Innovative R&D Organisation

There is a rising interest in how to organize R&D and innovations, especially considering new possibilities to involve internal and external stakeholders or networks. In this connection managerial practice shows that increasingly new forms of more informal and latent organizing for innovations and R&D are sought for.

The present session tries to explore this phenomenon by a kick-off presentation from Alfred Kärcher GmbH & Co. KG and invites papers that are provocative and deemed to stimulate discussion.

Session chair: Prof. Gordon Müller-Seitz, University of Duisburg-Essen
Industrial partner: Dr. Daniel Heubach, Alfred Kärcher GmbH & Co. KG

Sustainability and R&D Management

Sustainability has evolved into a guiding principle for business in the last few years. The core message is to integrate economic, environmental and social aspects, also referred to as the triple-bottom-line. Sustainability in R&D Management requires to assume a life cycle perspective, can trigger new ideas for R&D and innovation and supports creating environmentally sound products and solutions.

The special session “Sustainability and R&D Management” targets the broader question of how sustainability aspects can be integrated into R&D management. Challenges can be found at all management levels from business strategy over processes, methods and tools. Novel approaches from research integrating different disciplines and a practitioner’s perspective are welcome.

Session chair: Prof. Mario Schmidt, Pforzheim University
Industrial partner: Dr. Claus Lang-Koetz, Eisenmann AG

Managing New Service Development

When comparing the research on services to those research activities that focus on material goods, an obvious gap can be observed: While there exists a broad range of methodologies and tools for the development of goods, the development of services has hardly become a topic of scientific literature. However, many companies have recently begun – not least as a result of the growing pressures of competition – to rethink their strategy for service provision. They want their services to be "regular products". i.e. reproducible, exportable, even tangible and therefore developable. Services more and more undergo a systematic design process like any other product.

The special session “Managing New Service Development” deals with strategies, models, methods and tools to develop new services. In addition, the linkage of product and service development processes are of particular interest.

Session chairs: Walter Ganz, Fraunhofer IAO
Thomas Meiren, Fraunhofer IAO
Industrial partner: Harald Loos, Siemens AG

The Human Side of R&D

Managing R&D professionals has always been a challenging task and current R&D trends such as open and cross-industry innovation, interdisciplinary R&D and the fourth industrial revolution have considerably impacted the skills required from R&D staff. Furthermore, societal changes have impacted the incentives young professionals look for.

The Special Session » Managing the Human Side of R&D « aims at providing insights into Human Resource Management in R&D, such as R&D training, expert career paths, soft skills of R&D project management and aging R&D work forces.

Session chairs: Liza Wohlfart, Fraunhofer IAO
Jürgen Wilke, Fraunhofer IAO
Industrial partner: Andrea Tietz, Carl Zeiss AG

Future R&D Workspaces

Studies are proving already a serious impact of the workplace model on communication patterns as well as individual levels of motivation, performance and well-being. Besides individual aspects, there is an ever growing interest on the influences of the working environment on more group- and innovation-related success factors such as knowledge sharing, reciprocal inspiration and (multi-disciplinary) collaboration. Furthermore, in R&D the need to efficiently integrate practical, lab- or workshop-assigned tasks and theoretical work is becoming more important with shifting processes resulting in more computer-based activities in R&D.

The ongoing changes in R&D require new steps towards a more adaptive organization as well as an inspirational and flexible design of the working environment. In this session research papers on workplace studies or surveys are as welcome as reports on new concepts, prototypical mock-ups and best-practice implementations of working environments for R&D. These can cover the individual workplace level, innovative working environments for teams or R&D campuses. Sector-wise there are no restrictions as long as for example a technical focus is given (e. g. ICT, automotive, material- or life-sciences).

Session chairs: Stefan Rief, Fraunhofer IAO
Jörg Castor, Fraunhofer IAO
Industrial partner: Peter Guse, Robert Bosch GmbH

Collaborative Trend Management

Structured trend research and management, as a discipline within R&D Management, allows companies to recognize, understand and interpret trends in various areas and derive options for Research and Development. Missing a trend or reacting to it late can have significant competitive disadvantages for a company in today’s hypercompetitive markets.

Challenges in the thematic area of collaborative trend management include e.g.  the structuring and categorization of trends, the integration into R&D processes, internationalization and collaboration, search field and data source selection and IT support. We are seeking papers addressing one or more of the above mentioned questions, either conceptual or from a practitioners point of view.Case studies are very welcome as well.

Session chair: Prof. Michael Durst, FOM University of Applied Sciences
Industrial partner: Christian Beuther, Continental AG

Advanced Virtual Engineering in R&D

Shorter times to market and increasingly complex products drive the need for further frontloading in the product creation process. One promising approach to achieve this is to enhance product models in a holistic manner by adding functional aspects. These extended models support the verification of the product by simulation methods and thereby facilitate early optimization and maturity.

The special sessions aims at contributions related to the trend towards the application of innovative technologies to realize the so-called digital product, i. e. functional virtual prototypes in R&D to advance the competitiveness of industrial enterprises.

Session chair: Manfred Dangelmaier, Fraunhofer IAO
Industrial partner: Dr. Wolfram-Michael Remlinger Audi AG

Managing Business Model Development

Business model innovation is essential for companies to create and form new markets and to achieve a competitive advantage over rivals. Moreover, companies that determinedly foster sepcific initiiatives and approaches toward business model innovation are often able to better reflect on changing parameters in the organisational ecosystem.

We particularly call for empirical work providing insights into the phenomenon around business model innovation. In this regard, we would like to emphasize that the most convincing papers are considered for publication in the special issue of the R&D Management Journal which will be published in 2015. Topics of interest in business model development encompass, but are not restricted to:

- Organisational capabilities, processes or levels of business model innovation
- Business model innovativeness (e.g. incremental vs. new to the world)
- Patterns of business model innovation
- Collaborative perspective of business model innovation
- Success factors of digital business models
- Influence of technical trends (e.g. big date, 3D printing)
- Service-based business models


Session chair: Prof. Ellen Enkel, Zeppelin University
Industrial partner: Otto Gies, Airbus Group


Open Strategy in R&D

The term “open strategy” suggests that openness does not only relate to managing openness in an individual R&D project or in the idea-to-launch process. Open strategizing implies a more open approach towards managing the strategy and policy processes in R&D. There are two key dimensions that characterize open strategy making, namely (1) greater internal and external transparency as well as (2) greater inclusiveness of various actors in strategy-making, internal and external. Information systems and digital technologies afford novel means to engage a large number of participants in open strategy processes.

With this special session we call for papers that tackle open strategy in R&D and the strategic use of information systems in open strategy in R&D from different perspectives and theoretical lenses (e.g. network theory, micro-political approaches, theory of affordances). We are interested in advancing existing theory and strongly encourage empirical contributions that span both the private as well as the public sector.

Session chair: Prof. Sabine Brunswicker, Purdue University, USA
Industrial partner: Prof. Johann Fueller & Giordano Koch, Hyve AG


R&D Management across Cultures

The increased level of globalisation leads to R&D projects that often cross regional and cultural borders. R&D Managers have to successfully deal with the opportunities and challenges involved in order to achieve a good balance in between global policy and standardisation and local givens and product requirements.

The session puts a specific emphasis on Asia-Pacific. It includes both the fast growing giants China and India as well as Australia and New Zealand with their strong European links, thus offering an excellent example for interesting and, at the same time, challenging cross-cultural collaboration opportunities. Papers presented in the session may e.g. focus on the particularities of R&D Management in a specific Asia-Pacific region, concepts for improving R&D management in that region or cross-cultural R&D projects within this region and beyond (e.g. with European partners).

Session chair: Dr. Anton Kriz, University of Newcastle, AUS
Stephan Schüle, Fraunhofer IAO
Industrial partner: Marcus Madelung, Telstra Global