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World leading research INSTITUTE FOR MANUFACTURING (IFM) The IfM is part of the Department of Engineering at the University of Cambridge. With a focus on manufacturing industries it creates, develops and deploys new insights in management, technology and policy.

The Institute for Manufacturing (IfM) is a world centre of excellence for roadmapping. By working with us organisations see the benefit of a unique blend of knowledge, expertise and delivery. We apply the latest roadmapping techniques and approaches, all based on University of Cambridge research, setting us apart from other roadmapping services.

IFM EDUCATION AND CONSULTANCY SERVICES (IFM ECS) LTD IfM ECS is owned by the University of Cambridge. It transfers to industry the new ideas and approaches developed by researchers at the IfM. Its profits are gifted to the University to fund future research activities.

That makes an impact


We have helped more than 300 organisations with their strategic and technology innovation planning, including:


ABB • Airbus • AkzoNobel • AstraZeneca • Astrium • BAE Systems • BASF • BOC-Linde • BP • BT • Caterpillar • Crown Packaging • Cryovac • Department of Transport • Domino Printing Sciences • DSTL • ESAB • Eurotherm • GE Healthcare • General Mills • GKN • Grundfos • GSK • Henkel • Huntsman • IHI Corporation • Ineos • Innovate UK • Knowledge Transfer Network • Malvern Instruments • Mars • Microsoft • Ministry of Defence • NPL • Proton • Rexam • RNLI • Rolls-Royce • RSSB • Schlumberger • Siemens • Subsea 7 • Sulzer

In-company training & capability transfer We can deliver customised in-house training programmes that embed a roadmapping approach into strategic management in your organisation.

Find out how roadmapping can help your organisation:


We undertake roadmapping consultancy projects based on IfM research for a wide range of commercial and public sector organisations who are looking for a robust yet flexible process to support their strategic planning.



Transferred to you Consultancy





+44 (0)1223 766141


Open courses


We run a series of courses on strategic roadmapping techniques throughout the year which provide a thorough introduction to roadmapping, guiding participants through each step of the process.

Institute for Manufacturing, Department of Engineering, 17 Charles Babbage Road, Cambridge, CB3 0FS, United Kingdom +44 (0)1223 766141 | | | Twitter @IfMCambridge |


What is roadmapping? Roadmapping is a powerful strategic planning technique that for many organisations is integral to creating and delivering strategy and innovation. It explores, manages and communicates the links between technology, research and product development to commercial objectives and market opportunities through a structured visual framework.

The roadmapping process aims to answer six key questions around a particular issue or topic. Answering these questions informs a visual action plan, or roadmap, tailored to your organisations’ needs.

Where are we now?

Where do we want to go?

Why do we need to act?

What should we do? How should we do it?

How can you use it?

• • • • • • • • •

Product Capability Strategic Long-range Knowledge asset Programme Process Integration Technology

Efficient Roadmapping workshops can usually be completed in one or two days allowing you to gain insights quickly and use time and resources effectively.

Easily communicated

How can we get there?

The roadmapping process can be customised to suit the particular needs of an individual organisation or issue, and can be used for many different types of planning, including:

The benefits of roadmapping

The visual and graphical nature of a roadmap makes it easier to communicate key outcomes from the roadmapping process across your organisation.

“A roadmap can add immense value in many different ways particularly in the integrity and credibility of product and technology plans directly for the people doing the technical work...” Tim Handyside - Global Head of Innovation Processes, BASF’s Construction Chemicals Division

Collaborative Workshops bring together key stakeholders from across your organisation to look at the future of a chosen topic. Participants work together, through a highly collaborative process, encouraging commitment from participants as well as an understanding of their role in the wider picture.

Adaptable The speed of the approach also helps organisations become more responsive to future internal and external changes. Your roadmap can be adapted quickly in light of changing markets, legislation or organisational restructuring.


“Roadmapping provides a valuable framework. It doesn’t prescribe what to do, it involves the right people, drawing on collaborative wisdom for better outcomes.” Dr. Nicky Athanassopoulou, Senior Industrial Fellow, IfM ECS

Roadmapping is extremely flexible and scalable meaning it can be used to tackle almost any challenge, in any sector, whether you are focusing on a specific area like product development, innovation or functional strategy, or on a larger scale organisation-wide business strategy.

Easily integrated Roadmapping can integrate with many other strategic planning tools depending on your organisation’s needs, allowing you to gain additional knowledge and understanding in key areas and bring new insights back to your roadmap.

Case study:

Identifying the impact of emerging technologies with the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI). The Challenge New search and rescue technologies are rapidly advancing. Innovations such as detecting when people fall overboard and new tracking technologies are changing the way search and rescue operations are carried out. The RNLI Innovation Team were looking for an approach to assess and realign their operations to take advantage of new search and rescue technologies, ensuring they fully integrate with current and future maritime search and rescue systems.

The Process We worked with the RNLI to clearly articulate the current, planned and predicted changes across all search and rescue systems and personal ‘calling for help’ technologies. Insights from industry, academia and research institutions were gathered through online sessions and face-to-face roadmapping workshops into a series of roadmaps.

“The roadmapping process provided us with valuable and engaging ways to communicate technical information and influence the future direction of innovation and investment both internally and externally.” Dr Will Roberts, Senior Innovation Manager, Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI)

The Impact The process resulted in a single, coherent vision of the search and rescue communications landscape. The charity is now prepared for new technological advances as well as having a good appreciation of communications and training requirements for future lifesaving platforms. The RNLI also have information on where knowledge gaps exist so they can engage with industry, policy makers and academia to develop lifesaving search and rescue technologies in the future.

Find out how roadmapping can help your organisation:

Profile for Institute for Manufacturing (IfM)

Strategic Roadmapping at the IfM  

Strategic Roadmapping at the IfM