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Role of Technology

Role of Technology

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Published by: rajat_singla on Apr 01, 2012
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By: Himanshu Seth Himanshu Sharma Hina Dhawan

According to the economist J.K. Galbraith, technology means

Systematic application of scientific or other organised knowledge to practical tasks. Technology comprises both machines (hardware) and scientific thinking (software).

Types of Technology……………
From an R&D perspective the company’s technology can be of the following types:

Central to all or most of the company’s product.
e.g. diesel engine technology is central to Mahindra & Mahindra.

2) COMPLEMENTARY TECHNOLOGIES Additional technologies essential in product development.
e.g. designing, shockers in automotive companies.

Not necessarily incorporated in product but whose application contributes to the business.
e.g. computer software in Mahindra & Mahindra.

These are new to the company but may have long term significance for the product.
e.g. alternative fuel technology

As alternative fuels may be an emerging technology today but in the future as the prices of fossil fuel will rise, alternative fuel technology (bio-fuels, solar etc.) will certainly become the core technology for the company.

Moving towards BIO-FUELS…………
• Ethanol is widely used in Brazil and in the United States, and together both countries were responsible for 89 percent of the world's ethanol fuel production in 2009. • Most cars on the road today in the U.S. can run on blends of up to 10% ethanol

.. ………………………………………..
• BIO-ETHANOL is produced from corn, maize, sugarcane. • Produced on large scale in U.S. from corn. • Production from corn is controversial as it consumes a food crop to produce fuel.

Corn (contain sugars) Bio-Ethanol from algae Grow algae Decay algae Carbohydrates(contain sugars)



• A process to produce bio-ethanol from algae is being developed by the company Algenol • It is claimed the process can produce 6000 gallons per acre per year compared with 400 gallons for corn production.


Technological innovation…………..

Innovation can be a new invention, discovery, new ways of doing things, a new product, new ways of servicing, new uses of existing products, etc.

Innovation can be  Product innovation (development of new product)  Process innovation (new manufacturing process)  Management innovation (TQM etc.)  Production innovation (new inventory management
techniques, JIT )

 Marketing innovation (new sales approach)  Service innovation (Internet banking)

Impact of technology

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic :-Arthur C Clark

Please mentally select a card and concentrate on it. Do not tell anybody what it is.


Ice Breaker - Mind Game

Can you see the card you picked???


Advanced Technology
-Is related to any techniques when applied, makes a change in production methods, management systems, product design and manufacturing in an organization -On the other hand, it can be expressed as all of the technologies that is used for the aim of integrating of designing of product and process, planning and controlling of production, production processes with these activities

Advanced Production technologies
Computer aided design (CAD)

Is the system that realizes production by carrying the product to computer monitor , carrying out changes desired and transmitting the results as a program to computerized machines Is a technology providing data support to users by preparing production planning and programmes for coordinate measuring devices

Computer aided manufacturing (CAM)


Computer integrated manufacturing (CIM) Cellular manufacturing system (CMS) Flexible manufacturing system (FMS) Robots

It manages operational relationships between all levels within many departments

Is a model for workplace design that makes use of similarity between parts through standardization and common processing It allows flexibility to system to react to changes, whether predictable or unpredictable Are multifunctional , reprogrammable technologies that can move special parts or materials with programmable movement

Technology management
Is the management that provides the connection between management, science and engineering areas in forming and accessing of goals related to strategic aims and activities of the organization.

Advanced management technologies
Total Quality Management (TQM)

Are activities targeting at improving quality in every area by considering customer satisfaction, continuous improvement, participation in administration management. Is an inventory management system that reduces in process inventory and associated carrying costs. Is radically rethinking the business processes and radically redesigning with aim of making striking improvements on performance criteria such as cost, quality and speed Is process of investigating organization which are performance leaders and comparing own work methods Is area of knowledge within organizational theory that studies models and theories about the way an organization learns and adapts Seeks to improve quality of processes by identifying and removing causes of defects and minimizing variability in manufacturing processes

Just in time manufacturing (JIT)



Organizational Learning

Six sigma

Comparison with China and US
No of researchers
Expenditure on RnD (US$ Billion) Global Innovation index 2009 rank Research publications

India 154800

China 1423000

USA 1571000

41 48000

37 200000

1 370000

What needs to be done
1)Superior higher education system 2) Cross continental research participation 3) Incentive system for corporate sector involved in RnD 4) More investment In Science and Technology



It is impossible today to discuss the role of technology and human development without dealing head-on with the role of new technologies. The last thirty years has witnessed an explosive pace of scientific and technological innovation – particularly in the information and communications technology and life sciences.

Scientific and technological development could have a major role to play in reducing poverty and restoring our ecosystems- if it can be harnessed to benefit the many rather than profit the few; to prolong rather than foreshorten our custodianship of nature’s scarce resources

The sad fact is that we are not directing our scientific and technological research and effort to the question “What technologies will enable the poor to work their way out of poverty?”


People Centre Approach

“Today’s technological transformations hingecountry’s ability to unleash the “Today’s technological transformations hinge on each on each country’s ability creativity to unleash of its creativity their themneeds and opportunities.” technology, to innovate the people, enabling own to understand and master to understand and and to adapt technology to of its people, enabling them master technology, to innovate and to adapt technology to their own The focus of the 21st technology restricted needs and opportunities.” to debate should not bea matter ofto new technologies but include all technologies of use poor people. It is not for high and against low
technology. To meet the poverty targets of 2015 we need powerful new thinking on the use of restricted to newand new. This means starting withall technologies of use to from technology – old technologies but include poor people and what they need poor technology not people. It is poorstarting with technologies and ‘applying’ them to technology. question not people believe the technology will benefit them. ‘poverty’. The key a matter of for high and against low is whether The challenge then is to help poortargets of men choose need powerful new To meet the poverty women and 2015 we and use technology; to adapt, develop and improve it; and to manage it sustainably over time. It means subjecting the thinking ontechnology of the test of the three As. and new. This means starting choice of the use to technology – old Is it:

The focus of the 21st technology debate should not be

with poor people and what they need from technology not starting with  Affordable ?: technologies and ‘applying’ them to ‘poverty’.  Accessible ?: The Appropriate ?:. key question is whether poor people believe the technology  will benefit them.

The challenge then is to help poor women and men choose and use technology; to adapt, develop and improve it; and to manage it sustainably over time.
It means subjecting the choice of technology to the test of the three As.

1. Affordable 2. Accessible 3. Appropriate

Gandhi Ji once said “Recall the face of the poorest and weakest person you have seen and ask yourself if the steps you contemplate are going to be of any use to him”.

In the immediate decades to come the evidence is that small scale producers and traders in their fields, workshops, homes are more likely to find a pathway out of poverty from incremental technology improvements than from the proposed benefits of new technology.

Reclaiming SCIENCE AND RECLAIMINGscience and technology for the public good TECHNOLOGY FOR THE PUBLIC GOOD
Put people first in an approach to technology development.

By building the technological capabilities of poor people e.g. through intermediary organizations; and subject new technologies to field-testing to see whether they are affordable, accessible and appropriate.

Reclaiming SCIENCE AND RECLAIMINGscience and technology for the public good TECHNOLOGY FOR THE PUBLIC GOOD
Protect social and traditional knowledge.

Establish an intellectual property rights framework to protect local and traditional knowledge by keeping natural resources in the public domain. For example, genetic resources for food and agriculture must be kept in the public domain and protected from private expropriation through international agreements such as the IUPGFRA(International Undertaking on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. )

Reclaiming SCIENCE AND RECLAIMINGscience and technology for the public good TECHNOLOGY FOR THE PUBLIC GOOD
Redirect our research efforts towards the poor.

For example: - More investment by multilateral agencies and donor governments in scientific and technological R&D . - National funds and partnerships to create greater developing country capacity for proper research and development. - Or where this might not be affordable, regional funds, for example, for agricultural technology to promote agricultural research of cross-country interest. - Public support to low income or marginalized technology users to undertake incremental R&D.

Reclaiming SCIENCE AND RECLAIMINGscience and technology for the public good TECHNOLOGY FOR THE PUBLIC GOOD
Begin to build a „technology democracy‟.

Civil society has so far been largely passive in accepting the results of science and technology. We need to build the capacity of civil society organizations to raise awareness of technology policy issues.

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