This paper examines the use of scientometric overlay mapping as a tool of ’strategic intelligence’ to aid the governance of emerging technologies. We develop an integrative synthesis of different overlay mapping techniques and associated perspectives on technological emergence across the geographical, social, and cognitive spaces. To do so, we longitudinally analyse (with publication and patent data) three case-studies of emerging technologies in the medical domain. These are: RNA interference (RNAi), Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) testing technologies for cervical cancer, and Thiopurine Methyltransferase (TPMT) genetic testing. Given the flexibility (i.e. adaptability to different sources of data) and granularity (i.e. applicability across multiple levels of data aggregation) of overlay mapping techniques, we argue that these techniques can favour the integration and comparison of results from different contexts and cases, thus potentially functioning as platform for a ’distributed’ strategic intelligence for analysts and decision-makers.
Author(s): Daniele Rotolo, Ismael Rafols, Michael M. Hopkins, Loet Leydesdorff
Organization(s): University of Sussex, Universitat Politècnica de València
Source: Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology