Innovation in mature industries : recent impacts of the oil & gas and automobile technological trends on the steel industry
Author(s)Tivelli, Marco M. (Marco Mario), 1964-
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Management of Technology Program.
James M. Utterback.
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In order to survive, the steel industry has undergone traumatic changes in the last years. A thirty years old overcapacity combined with a slow growing market led to a steadily eroding profitability of steel companies, particularly in developed economies. These factors determined an industry profile delineated by a relentless quest for cost cutting and efficient operations. Regarding innovation, the approach of the steel industry has been reactive, basically following market requirements. The industry has historically found itself far from its customers businesses and has struggled to find innovative products and services that could meet an unperceived or unarticulated need so as to propose higher value and grow its market. Two important customers of the steel industry are the oil and gas and the automotive industries, two mature businesses as well. Even when changes in these two steel users have also been relatively slow, the more recent technological trends analyzed in this work suggest an upcoming faster pace of change. This thesis examines these recent technological trends in the oil and gas and automotive industries with regards to the potential impact in the steel industry. Some of the technological gaps that might be encountered in those trends are visited, in particular where substitution of lighter materials for steel is a possible avenue. Other cases where the new technological trend may affect consumption of steel are also analyzed. Following these lines, the thesis goes on analyzing the steel general approach to innovation and R&D and speculates on provocative alternatives to that approach that could put the industry in a better position for the future.
Thesis (S.M.M.O.T.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sloan School of Management, Management of Technology Program, 2004.Includes bibliographical references (leaves 102-106).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Management of Technology Program.; Sloan School of Management
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Management of Technology Program.