Technological monitoring radar: a weak signals interpretation tool for the identification of strategic surprises

Adalton Ozaki, Alexandre Del Rey, Fernando Carvalho de Almeida


In the current competitive scenario, marked by rapid and constant changes, it is vital that companies actively monitor the business environment, in search of signs which might anticipate changes. This study poses to propose and discuss a tool called Technological Monitoring Radar, which endeavours to address the following query: “How can a company systematically monitor the environment and capture signs that anticipate opportunities and threats concerning a particular technology?”. The literature review covers Competitive Intelligence, Technological Intelligence, Environmental Analysis and Anticipative Monitoring. Based on the critical analysis of the literature, a tool called Technological Monitoring Radar is proposed comprising five environments to be monitored (political, economical, technological, social and competition) each of which with key topics for analysis. To exemplify the use of the tool, it is applied to the smartphone segment in an exclusively reflexive manner, and without the participation of a specific company. One of the suggestions for future research is precisely the application of the proposed methodology in an actual company. Despite the limitation of this being a theoretical study, the example demonstrated the tool´s applicability. The radar prove to be very useful for a company that needs to monitor the environment in search of signs of change. This study´s main contribution is to relate different fields of study (technological intelligence, environmental analysis and anticipative monitoring) and different approaches to provide a practical tool that allows a manager to identify and better visualize opportunities and threats, thus avoiding strategic surprises in the technological arena.

Key words: Technological monitoring. Technological intelligence. Competitive intelligence. Weak signals.


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