Roadmap to Reality
A technology roadmap is a flexible planning schedule to support strategic and long-range planning, by matching short-term and long-term goals with specific technology solutions. It is a plan that applies to a new product or process and may include using technology forecasting or technology scouting to identify suitable emerging technologies. It is a known technique to help manage the fuzzy front-end of innovation. It is also expected that roadmapping techniques may help companies to survive in turbulent environments and help them to plan in a more holistic way to include non-financial goals and drive towards a more sustainable development. Here roadmaps can be combined with other corporate foresight methods to facilitate systemic change.
Developing a roadmap has three major uses. It helps reach a consensus about a set of needs and the technologies required to satisfy those needs, it provides a mechanism to help forecast technology developments, and it provides a framework to help plan and coordinate technology developments. It may also be used as an analysis tool to map the development and emergence from new industries.