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Article
Publication date: 13 March 2017

Jonathan Calof

This paper aims to present a categorization scheme and use it to classify Canadian Government (federal and provincial) competitive intelligence (CI) programs and to also look at…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to present a categorization scheme and use it to classify Canadian Government (federal and provincial) competitive intelligence (CI) programs and to also look at the impact of these programs on sectoral and regional economic development.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on the author’s 25 years of experience designing, running, and studying Canadian Government CI programs, a classification scheme to classify these programs has been developed and used. Also, by using program review information, this paper looks at evidence for program impact on regional and sectoral economic development.

Findings

This paper identifies a broad range of federal and provincially sponsored CI programs aimed at helping both government officers and those outside the department make better decisions. The review identified several roles that the government can play in using CI: creator of CI (both for their own purposes and also for helping Canadian companies), CI environment skills builder (helping Canadian companies develop skills in developing their own CI) and CI partner (working jointly with Canadian companies in developing CI). While there have not been many formal program reviews of the CI programs sponsored by Canadian Government departments and agencies, anecdotal evidence (from training program participant evaluations) and a comprehensive review of a small community CI-based economic development program support positive sectoral and regional economic development results arising from these programs.

Practical implications

CI programs can be used as part of a government’s regional and sectoral economic development approach. CI can be used to assist with decision-making both within and outside the government. This paper identifies several different kinds of programs that can be used to further a government’s economic development agenda.

Originality/value

There are very few articles that examine how governments have helped companies to develop CI and how they have used CI, and none has looked at the impact of these on regional and sectoral economic development. This paper, based on the author’s experiences, provides a view of the Canadian programs and their impact on regional/sectoral economic development.

Article
Publication date: 13 November 2017

Jonathan Calof

With intelligence (a field related to foresight) practice growing, the purpose of this study was to examine the practices of Canadian competitive intelligence (CI) practitioners.

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Abstract

Purpose

With intelligence (a field related to foresight) practice growing, the purpose of this study was to examine the practices of Canadian competitive intelligence (CI) practitioners.

Design/methodology/approach

Survey of Canadian CI practitioners who are SCIP members (Strategic and Competitive Intelligence Professional), using a revision to a previously used instrument designed to examine competitive intelligence practices.

Findings

Canadian SCIP member competitive intelligence practices seem to be more formalized than those found in the global SCIP study in 2006 with 84.8 per cent having a manager with CI responsibilities, 61 per cent with a formal centralized CI unit and only 9 per cent responding that CI was done informally. Intelligence units were generally smaller with 38 per cent having one full-time CI resource and 41 per cent having between 2 and 4 full-time resources. Additional findings on information sources used, analytical techniques used, evaluation methods and communication methods are reported.

Research limitations/implications

Despite getting responses from close to 50 per cent of SCIP members, the small sample size (79) makes it difficult to generalize the results beyond the Canadian SCIP environment and limits the testing that can be done.

Originality/value

The last study on Canadian competitive intelligence practices was in 2008, thus part of the originality of the study was getting more recent information on corporate intelligence practice. In addition, this is the first Canadian study to focus specifically on known intelligence practitioners (SCIP members). Past studies focused on companies in general regardless of whether respondents knew what competitive intelligence was or practiced CI.

Details

foresight, vol. 19 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 4 November 2020

Jonathan Calof

Given the importance of competitive intelligence (CI) to the economic performance of firms, understanding whether CI practice is impacted by firm size or by their awareness of CI…

Abstract

Purpose

Given the importance of competitive intelligence (CI) to the economic performance of firms, understanding whether CI practice is impacted by firm size or by their awareness of CI maybe important when creating programs designed to improve firms’ CI performance. This paper aims to address this by examining the extent to which the CI practices of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and large firms differed using a sample of firms with knowledge/awareness of CI.

Design/methodology/approach

A survey was developed that included 10 CI organization questions and 67 CI process questions. The survey was sent to a sample with awareness/knowledge of CI – strategic and CI professionals (SCIP) members and individuals who had attended SCIP events T-tests were then used to compare the SME’s and large firms’ responses to the 10 CI organization and 67 CI process questions.

Findings

For firms with CI awareness/knowledge, the study results suggest that size has very little relationship with CI practice. Of the 10 CI organization variables, only two were significantly different between the SME’s and the large firms. Large firms had more full-time CI staff and were more likely to have a formal intelligence unit compared to the SME’s. Of the 67 CI process variables, only four were significantly different between the SME’s and the large firms. Large firms made more use of company intranet for distributing CI findings use business analytics software and use commercial databases for information than SME’s while the SME’s used social media, in particular Facebook more than large firms, in their competitive intelligence activities.

Originality/value

This study uses a sample frame of firms with CI awareness/knowledge in examining differences between SME’s and large firms CI practices.

Details

foresight, vol. 22 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

Content available

Abstract

Details

foresight, vol. 20 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Content available
Article
Publication date: 10 December 2020

Jonathan Calof and Peter Bishop

Abstract

Details

foresight, vol. 22 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Article
Publication date: 30 January 2020

Jonathan Calof, Dirk Meissner and Konstantin Vishnevskiy

This paper aims to provide a detailed case study of a corporate foresight for innovation (CFI) project done by the Higher School of Economics’ (HSE) (Moscow, Russia) corporate…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to provide a detailed case study of a corporate foresight for innovation (CFI) project done by the Higher School of Economics’ (HSE) (Moscow, Russia) corporate foresight (CF) unit for a large state-owned Russian service company. It demonstrates how CFI methods lead to recommendations and how these recommendations result in decisions.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawing from being part of the project team, review of the project documents and interviews, the case describes a multi-phased CFI project which incorporated several CF methods. Techniques used for the project itself included grand challenges and trend analysis, analysis of best practices through use of benchmarking and horizon scanning, interviews, expert panels, wild card and weak signals analysis, cross impact analysis, SWOT and backcasting. The project used a broad-base of secondary information, expert panels consisting of company experts and HSE CF team personnel, interviews with senior management and an extensive literature review using HSE’s propriety iFORA system.

Findings

In all 17 CFI recommendation and over 100 implementation recommendations were made; 94 per cent of the CFI recommendations were accepted with most implemented at the time this case was written. The case also identifies five enabling factors that collectively both helped the CFI project and led to a high rate of recommendation acceptance and one factor that hindered CFI project success.

Practical implications

The case study provides detailed information and insight that can help others in conducting CF for innovation projects and establishes a link between CF methods and innovation-based recommendations and subsequent decisions.

Originality/value

In-depth case studies that show academe and practitioners how CFI leads to recommendations and is linked to subsequent decisions have been identified as a gap in the literature. This paper therefore seeks to address this need by presenting a detailed CF case for a corporate innovation project.

Details

foresight, vol. 22 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6689

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 24 February 2012

Jonathan Calof, Riel Miller and Michael Jackson

This article aims to focus on how to ensure that Future‐Oriented Technology Assessment (FTA) activities have an impact on decision‐making. On the basis of the extensive experience

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Abstract

Purpose

This article aims to focus on how to ensure that Future‐Oriented Technology Assessment (FTA) activities have an impact on decision‐making. On the basis of the extensive experience of the authors, this article seeks to offer suggestions regarding the factors that may help policy makers, academics, consultants, and others involved in FTA projects, to produce useful and meaningful contributions to decision‐making processes.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology deployed for this article is empirical. It is based on the lessons extracted and evidence produced by the authors' hundreds of diverse global consulting engagements as well as their analytical work on the subject. Added together the authors of this paper have engaged in over 80 years of professional practice. The article summarizes the results of presentations given by the authors and the ensuing discussion that occurred at the conference: Futures Oriented Technology Analysis 2011, held at the Institute for Prospective Technological Studies (IPTS) in Seville on 13 May.

Findings

Impactful FTA starts with the selection of the appropriate methodologies and skills for the specific anticipatory task. Arguing on the basis of experience, the authors point out that the effective impact of FTA projects on decision‐making depends on a strong grasp of the principles of foresight and project design, an educated client with clear expectations and a strong commitment, well‐developed communication efforts throughout, and considerable managerial capacity both on the demand and supply sides of the process.

Originality/value

By bringing the evidence of experience to bear, this article adds value to existing academic and practitioner discussions of the effectiveness of FTA for decision‐making. The article provides an original vantage point on key questions being posed by both users and suppliers of forward‐looking activities.

Article
Publication date: 25 July 2008

Paul L. Dishman and Jonathan L. Calof

The paper seeks to explore competitive intelligence as a complex business construct and as a precedent for marketing strategy formulation.

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Abstract

Purpose

The paper seeks to explore competitive intelligence as a complex business construct and as a precedent for marketing strategy formulation.

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 1,025 executives were surveyed about their companies' usage of competitive intelligence collection, analysis, and dissemination as well as their perception concerning certain organizational characteristics.

Findings

This research develops and tests intelligence as a precedent to marketing strategy formulation, revealing multiple phases and contributing aspects within the process. It also discovers that the practice of competitive intelligence, while strong in the area of information collection, is weak from a process and analytical perspective.

Research limitations/implications

While the sample was indeed a census of Canadian technology firms, care must be taken in generalizing the study beyond this industry, and certainly beyond the Canadian borders. Also, the questionnaire used only dichotomous variables (yes/no answers), which limited the testing that could be done.

Practical implications

Using these results, competitive intelligence departments and professionals can improve efficacy within their approach and execution strategies.

Originality/value

The contribution of this paper is two‐fold. It reveals many of the “state‐of‐the‐art” levels of practice within current competitive intelligence efforts, and it proposes a model of the intelligence process.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 42 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 25 July 2008

Jonathan L. Calof and Sheila Wright

The article traces the origins of the competitive intelligence fields and identifies both the practitioner, academic and inter‐disciplinary views on CI practice. An examination of…

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Abstract

Purpose

The article traces the origins of the competitive intelligence fields and identifies both the practitioner, academic and inter‐disciplinary views on CI practice. An examination of the literature relating to the field is presented, including the identification of the linear relationship which CI has with marketing and strategic planning activities.

Design/methodology/approach

Bibliometric assessment of the discipline. Findings reveal the representation of cross disciplinary literature which emphasises the multi‐faceted role which competitive intelligence plays in a modern organization.

Findings

The analysis supports the view of competitive intelligence being an activity consisting dominantly of environmental scanning and strategic management literature. New fields of study and activity are rapidly becoming part of the competitive intelligence framework.

Research limitations/implications

The analysis only uses ABI Inform as the primary sources for literature alongside Society of Competitive Intelligence Professionals (SCIP) and Competitive Intelligence Foundation (CIF) publications, particularly the Journal of Competitive Intelligence and Management. A more comprehensive bibliometric analysis might reveal additional insights. Simple counts were used for analytical purposes rather than co‐citation analysis.

Practical implications

Attention is drawn to the need for the integration of additional, complementary fields of study and competitive intelligence practice. It is clear that today's competitive intelligence practitioner cannot afford to rely on what they learned 20 years ago in order to ensure the continued competitive advantage of their firm. A keen understanding of all business functions, especially marketing and planning is advocated.

Originality/value

While there have been bibliographies of competitive intelligence literature there have been few attempts to relate this to the three distinct areas of practice. This article is of use to scholars in assisting them to disentangle the various aspect of competitive intelligence and also to managers who wish to gain an appreciation of the potential which competitive intelligence can bring to marking and business success.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 42 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 May 2006

Sheila Wright and Jonathan L. Calof

Seeks to examine three empirical studies carried out in Canada, the UK and Europe with comparisons drawn on their approach and findings.

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Abstract

Purpose

Seeks to examine three empirical studies carried out in Canada, the UK and Europe with comparisons drawn on their approach and findings.

Design/methodology/approach

The studies were compared using a framework, developed by the authors, along four central elements and two influencing drivers.

Findings

Little measurement consistency or output value was evident. The current focus on isolated studies, carried out at a macro level, is discouraged.

Practical implications

Future studies need greater rigour, and consequently might be of more value to academics and practitioners.

Originality/value

The lack of research consistency is highlighted. Recommendations are made for stronger adhesion with other disciplines to develop a robust research agenda.

Details

European Journal of Marketing, vol. 40 no. 5/6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0309-0566

Keywords

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