IRI Workshop: Portfolio Management in Innovation

Event Type
1 pm - 5 pm

Portfolio Management, Project Management, Risk Management, Strategic Planning

This workshop is designed to provide an introduction to portfolio management in research and development. In it, the participants will learn about both the strategic and financial valuation of proposed projects – and multiple ways one might prioritize a list of projects.  Key concepts such as product pipelines, product life cycles, and product horizons will be covered.  Participants will learn the strengths and weaknesses of applying common metrics such as risk-adjusted net present value and internal rate of return.  This workshop will also cover the importance of matching one’s portfolio process to the culture of decision making at one’s company.   Participants will also learn scenario analysis and product roadmaps.

The workshop will feature practical illustrations based on the real-world experiences of the instructor.  The workshop will include hands-on break-out sessions that will give participants confidence in applying these concepts.   Note that this workshop will not use (nor advocate for) any specific commercially available portfolio management software. Upon completion, participants will quickly be able to participate in and lead portfolio planning activities that will augment their technical and strategic work, thereby creating more value for their organizations. 

Course Outline: 

• Strategic basis for portfolio planning
• Product valuation – key metrics (and how not to use them)
• Product pipelines, product life cycles and product horizons
• Alignment of valuation with strategy
• Resource allocation (level loading, launch planning)
• Scenario analysis and real options
• Technology and product roadmaps
• Role of longer range technology investments
• Portfolio reviews: guiding principles, alignment with culture

The session will include break-outs to work with the tools and techniques in order to evaluate understanding and also build connections with the other participants.

Who should attend:

The workshop is designed for both researchers who have recently assumed a team leadership role and for individual contributors who seeks to lead an innovation team in the future. It is designed for those who want to broaden their ability to develop and present innovation proposals by including compelling financial analyses.   It is also appropriate for an innovation team member who wants to develop a broader understanding of innovation financials.  This workshop can be viewed as a springboard to the participant’s professional advancement. 

Registration Fees:

IRI Members: $295
Non Members: $395 

Due to limited seating, we request that you cancel at least 48 hours before a scheduled class. This gives us the opportunity to fill the class. However, if you do not cancel prior to the 48 hours, you will lose the payment for the class.

All IRI events are broadcast in Eastern Standard Time

Spencer Pugh

Spencer Pugh


Prospect Ridge Consulting, LLC

Dr. Spencer Pugh is an executive with over 40 years of experience in technology development, product commercialization, and business management.    He is the Principal of Prospect Ridge Consulting, LLC, and serves as Chief Scientist and Board Director of the start-up MagPlasma.  Most recently, he was Vice-President, Research and Development, for Michelman, a specialty chemical company headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio.   Prior to that, Spencer was the Vice-President and General Manager of the Energy and Environment Global Business Unit of Battelle, the research and development non-profit headquartered in Columbus, Ohio.  He started his professional career with the Eastman Kodak Company in Rochester NY, where Spencer was a Senior Laboratory Head.  He holds a Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry from Stanford University.   He is a Six Sigma Black Belt and is also a Certified Licensing Professional (CLP), licensed by the Licensing Executives Society (LES). He has been active in the Innovation Research Interchange (IRI) for over 15 years and has served on its Board of Directors twice. 

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