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Monday, 9 December 2013

Service systems group away day

Once a year, I take my team on an 'away' day to discuss the past year, the coming year and do some brainstorming and planning. I thought I'll put down my thoughts on this year's agenda. (We are expecting 18 of us).

This year's agenda is set out in 3 sections

State of knowledge: value, service and business models
Given that there are new members of the team, I'll start with a briefing on the background to the team's approach to knowledge in value, service and business models ie the SDLogic approach. I will do a presentation in this space and then discuss who is doing what interesting research in the space globally. I will divide this space into 4 - thinking (concepts and ideas), tinkering (empirical research), tooling (methods, mechanisms, creations) and telling (publishing, teaching, communicating the research) and talk about which academic teams have 'got' the thinking in SDLogic, those who are still in the old school, the links between service, value and the future of disruptive business models and what knowledge is needed disciplinarily in computing, materials, engineering, business (strategy, Marketing, OBHRM, finance, economics etc.) that has impact on new business/economic models ala SDlogic. I will also discuss where I believe more research/thinking is really needed, integrating what everyone in the team is working on, particularly the doctoral students where "we will watch your career with great interest" #starwarshomage ;) and how the cutting edge work we expect from the doctoral students contributes to knowledge overall. This is of special relevance to the future of incomplete products and integration of personal data to future offerings, IoT markets etc.

State of industry: business models
The next discussion is basically a brain dump from me on all that I see is happening for each industry in terms of their business and economic models - financial services, engineering, telecommunication, education, manufacturing, entertainment/creative - I will discuss their markets and their business models, applying the knowledge we have and where I believe each industry will be looking to innovate, the role of regulation etc. more importantly, I will elaborate on where each industry might be going in a hyper connected IoT era, seen from an SDLogic practice perspective.

State of innovation/investment
I don't usually talk about my entrepreneurial activity in a research meeting but I thought this year I will do it since much of our research is entwined with exploitation. In a year, I usually invest between £50k-£100k of my own money either as an angel investor in startups, or investing in my own ideas/creation. I will talk through the year gone past, what I invested in (and what fruits yielded ;p) and what I look to invest in the coming year and what technological domain and business models I will be watching very closely.

Given all that I have spoken on, I'd like to hear the team's thoughts in terms of skills, capabilities, what areas of research, tools we should be investing in, capacity building etc.

Loads to discuss and I'm looking forward to it!