IRS Ruth Jiang
Wednesday, 19 October 2016, noon, TIM Social Area
Essays on the implications of disruptive technologies: The case of additive manufacturing
Additive manufacturing (colloquially: 3D printing) is a highly discussed topic. Previous research has argued that this technology not only has profound effects on manufacturing businesses but also on society, which demands new corporate strategies and policies alike. Thus, the development of reliable future scenarios is key for strategic planning and decision making as well as for future research. Dedicated academic studies in this field remain scarce. I therefore present the results of an extensive Delphi survey on the future of additive manufacturing with a focus on its economic and societal implications in 2030 within my first study. The outcome is a future scenario built on the six Delphi projections with the highest consensus on the likelihood of occurrence. The study complements this most probable scenario with a discussion on controversial, extreme scenarios. Based on these findings I derive implications for industry, policy, and future research. My second and third study concentrate more on the organizational aspect of additive manufacturing’s implications. Moving forward, there will be a major paradigm shift within the production industries – experts foresee a move from the now present design-for-manufacturing paradigm to a manufacturing-for-design scheme. This will have implications on firm’s organizational structures and configurations, which I will look into in more detail through case studies and survey analysis.