Stevens Technology Confidence Index again trends upward


Business confidence soars, especially in N. America, Index finds ...

HOBOKEN, N.J. -- Stevens Institute of Technology has released its third Technology Confidence Index report, via its executive research and analysis unit, the Global Technology Confidence Indicators (GTCI). The report establishes a number of valuable findings and important trends, including a stark divergence between the views of global senior executives regarding economic growth for North America compared to their assessments of other regions of the world.

The latest report of GTCI shows business confidence soaring for North America but remaining flat for Europe and Asia, just as presaged in the previous GTCI report of late 2003. Fortunately for world-wide economic growth, there is a dramatic increase over the past three months in the number of executives spanning the globe who are planning to increase technology investments next year.

"Regardless of disparate views concerning growth in North America and Europe, the belief that emerging technologies will improve future company performance is shared by executives around the world," said Dr. Derek B. Smith, former President of 'The Economist' Asia/Pacific and now the Director of Stevens GTCI. "Executives believe we are poised on the rim of a major technology investment boom: The fuse is lit. The only question is, 'When?'"

"With the third iteration of the GTCI survey and report," said Jerry MacArthur Hultin, Dean of Stevens' Howe School of Technology Management, "Stevens possesses a remarkable index by which to monitor underlying forces driving business and technology. GTCI has highlighted major synergies and dissonances that have real impact in marketplace performance."

"Our quarterly Technology Confidence Index is based on data obtained from our exclusive Senior International Executive Members," said Smith. "Our membership of high-powered international executives has been carefully built to represent a diverse set of the world's largest organizations across multiple industries." Panel members represent Global 2000 companies and organizations, most of which have a minimum of $1 billion in sales.

"One of the key features of GTCI is in identifying where gaps in confidence occur between economic decision makers (EDMs) and technical decision makers (TDMs)," said Smith. "Using GTCI reports to identify these critical gaps, organizations can improve the alignment of technology management objectives between their economic and technical managers."

"Clearly, by evidence of this report," said Stevens President Dr. Harold J. Raveché, "the GTCI Index is becoming an authoritative source for predicting future trends."


The Global Technology Confidence Index (GTCI INDEX) moved up another point in the three months to January, when the third survey was administered. This took it to two points above the base set by the inaugural survey in May 2003. Despite the very high level of confidence found in that first survey the index moved up a point by October and, three months later, that confidence has continued to develop so that the second iteration of the index becomes:


May '03 October '03 January '04
100.0 101.1 102.0
This index is a mixture of confidence in the business outlook and confidence in various aspects of technology management, with the later having much the greater weight.

The comprehensive GTCI REPORT, released last week, provides highlights of key findings and a detailed analysis of survey data. As in the previous two outings, the report covers five major categories, including: 1) General Economic and Globalization, 2) Human Capital, 3) Technology Alignment, 4) Technology Innovation, and 5) Strategic Project and Process Management.

Eric Koomen, GTCI Project Coordinator, illuminated some of the key findings.

"Globally, optimism about business in the year ahead is about the same as three months ago," said Koomen. "But not in North America, where bullish sentiment has increased over the very high levels found in the last GTCI report, to stand nearly 13 percent up over May 2003."

The comparative numbers in the GTCI INDEX look like this:

October '03 January '04
GTCI : Business confidence Index (World) = 107.0 106.8
GTCI : Business confidence Index (N. America) = 111.2 112.7

"The proportion of executives who expect a fall in the rate of technology investment next year has dropped by half," Koomen continued. "Obviously, if this upward trend in confidence continues, as evidenced over our last three surveys, there are tremendous implications for the way in which events may unfold in this highly political year of 2004."

Among other report highlights, the importance of new products to sales faltered – but not in Japan; confidence in evolving technologies is unchanged, remaining high and steady and, while almost nobody thinks the effectiveness of their strategic project management capabilities has deteriorated over the last year, three quarters think they have improved.

Source: Eurekalert & others

Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 21 Feb 2009
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