Technological trend analysis​

Innovation is a key driver of economic and social development, and many innovative technological solutions improve the quality of our life or offer potential contributions to solving challenges such as climate change, health & well-being and secure societies. However, new technological solutions may also raise serious ethical, legal and societal dilemmas. Furthermore, coming up with radically new ideas and integrating them in our economies and societies is a tremendous challenge. It relies on the synergy of other factors such as the economic, political and environmental context, ethical acceptability and social desirability.

Our approach

Our multidisciplinary and collaborative research projects leverage innovations with high potential impact to benefit our economy and society. We help researchers improve their technology building processes to advance new technological trends, including better identification of ideas at early stages and aligning them with the societal challenges and needs.

We have developed horizon scanning tools and methodologies to identify and evaluate new and emerging trending technologies with high impact potential. Our horizon scanning involves an analysis of:

(1) weak signal (such as media news, blogs, interviews, popular series and books)
(2) private and public sectors initiatives (e.g. EC funded projects, DARPA and MIT news, patents, start-ups)
(3) academic literature

We consider successful factors for emerging technologies by:

  • identifying emerging topics
  • analysing the impact of finished projects on the science & technology landscape from the researcher perspective
  • promoting visibility and communication
  • facilitating the societal up-take of developed solutions.

We integrate legal analysis and ethical, privacy, human rights and socio-economic impact assessments to identify potential positive impacts as well as risks associated with those technological trends. We support clients and project partners in identifying, mitigating and monitoring potential ethical, legal and societal risks during the research activities of a project (internal impacts), as well as effects of potential application of technological solutions after the project ends (external impacts).

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