Congratulations to The Chair of the Graduate School of Technology Management, Prof Elma van der Lingen for her Inaugural Address on 24 July 2018 at the Senate Hall. The topic was “Managing innovation in a technology dominated world”.
A wide range of interrelated digital technology systems, such as Big Data, the Internet of Things, advanced robotics, artificial intelligence, and online platforms, have emerged over the past few years. The interrelated nature enables the systems to build on each other and incremental innovations in any of these and/or other technology related systems can cause acceleration. The fourth industrial revolution has become important in product and process innovations to generate significant productivity gains and to sustain a competitive advantage.
The recent technological advances have prompted various innovations. Innovation is enabled and influenced by a large number of diverse factors, including technology and manufacturing as hard issues, and leadership and new skills as soft issues. The disruption caused by digital technologies has been fundamental to business model innovations, which became essential for creating new value propositions. Business model innovations are often considered more important than technological innovation or product innovation.
The influence of digitisation on industrial decision-making has become eminent, but also the important role that universities and government need to fulfil. The Triple Helix theory suggests that interaction among university-industry-government is the key to improving conditions for innovation. The importance of managing innovation in the digitisation era was addressed.