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Forest Products Society

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Publication: Journal of Forest Products Business Research
Authors: 0
Reference ID: Volume 3, Article No. 1
Publish Year: 2006
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Title: A Decade of Innovation in Particleboard and Composite Materials: A Content Analysis of Washington State University’s International Particleboard/Composite Materials Symposium Proceedings
Description:
The authors investigated the typology and characteristics of recent technology innovation in particleboard and composite materials. Conducting a cluster analy sis of data derived from a content analysis of the International Particleboard/Composite Materials Symposium Proceedings, they identified four major clusters of like-type technology innovations –manufacturing, high technology, materials processing, and new products. Equipment makers dominated innovation in all four clusters, and “improved product quality ” was the predominant source of economic benefits. Innovations in the manufacturing cluster are characterized as process innovations originated by an equipment maker. Equipment makers provided specific technology , but participation by manufacturers was not unusual. There was no participation by end-users. After “improved product quality,” “reduced energy consumption” was most often cited as a source of economic benefits. High technology innovations are characterized as process innovations originated by an equipment maker that provided specific technology. There was no participation by a manufacturer or end-user. In
general, equipment makers were technology leaders, sometimes involving themselves in particleboard and composite materials production processes for the first time. “Improved product quality” was the predominant source of economic benefits. Materials processing innovations are characterized as process innovations originated by an equipment maker. There was significant manufacturer participation and no participation by end-users. After “improved product quality,”
“substitution of inexpensive for expensive raw materials” and “reduced environmental impacts,” were jointly cited as sources of economic benefit. New product innovations are characterized as product or combination product/process innovations originated by an equipment maker or jointly with an equipment maker and a manufacturer both providing specific technology . End-user participation was not unusual. After “improved product quality,” “better fits for customer end uses
and processes” and, jointly , “more effective use of raw materials” and “substitution of inexpensive for expensive raw materials” predominated as sources of economic benefits. Citing the Utterback-Abernathy model of technology innovation, the authors anticipate continued equipment maker innovation in the form of improved automation and continuous processing.

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