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Business and Management.
This thesis aims to provide an insight into the practices of firms in Ireland in relation to both new product development and technology acquisition, and the interface between the two areas. This research operates on a number of levels and involves great deal of both primary and secondary research. In order to provide a suitable backdrop to the research and to enable the development of a suitable knowledge base for the author, the results of an extensive literature review is detailed. This concerns itself with the two key areas under investigation; new product development and technology transfer. In addition to this an examination of Ireland’s research and development activities and the nature of our SME sector is documented. The investigation of these areas enabled the development of a research plan. A detailed account of the methodology employed is included herein, which is designed to fulfil the research problem: “To examine the product development activities of small and medium sized manufacturing enterprises (SMMEs) in Ireland, with particular reference to the role of technology acquisition as a means of product development”. This was achieved using both qualitative and quantitative methods, with a predominance of qualitative research. The bulk of the research involves a randomly sampled mail survey of 500 firms in Ireland, and it is from induction of this survey that results are obtained. The nature of the study dictated that a large number of areas be examined in the survey and therefore it provides a good overview of the activities of firms in Ireland. The results can be broadly divided into three areas: new product development, technology acquisition and technology awareness. Within these the current practices, aspirations and concerns of firms are examined.
Cullen, D.: New Product Development and Technology Acquisition in Small and Medium Sized Manufacturing Firms in Ireland. Masters Thesis. Dublin Institute of Technology, 1998.