Topic Roadmapping and Performance Dimensions

Clare Farrukh, University of Cambridge

Nicky Athanassopoulou, University of Cambridge

Rob Phaal, University of Cambridge



Identifying problems that a technology can solve at an early stage in its development can enhance the exploitation opportunities for an organisation. Initiating an ongoing technology-commercial dialogue facilitates the process but can feel unstructured and lacking in focus. Current roadmapping processes, while supportive of the communication process, sometimes lack consideration of specific parameters needed for matching a new technology to a new market. This paper describes the development and testing of a practical approach to mapping technology opportunities, with the aim of engaging both commercial and technical stakeholders in evaluating a technology and recording tangible outputs from the discussion. Using an exploratory topic roadmapping workshop approach in conjunction with a technology performance comparison template, a practical process is provided for scientists, technologists and industrialists to drive forward targeted commercialisation. Development and use of this approach is illustrated by case studies of the process and the templates used. The templates are easy to apply and help to structure and guide discussion, promote a consensual way forward and lead to practical action plans. The organisational impact and process learning is discussed, along with implications for improving and further testing of the methods.


Keywords: Roadmapping, performance, technology, commercialisation


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