Here is another article that suggests that well planned experiments and statistical data can help boost productivity and drive productive discussion.
However, in my experience, meaningful experiments are rather difficult to do in R&D Management (as opposed to R&D itself). Unlike manufacturing, where you can build the same widget multiple times and compare results using statistical analysis. Since R&D is a process of generating knowledge, once development is complete, it rather difficult to do it again in the same way.
The same is true for companies, too – as many people who have presented management with information that didn’t fit the bosses’ worldview can attest. One way to cut through such problems is to use the same sorts of statistical methods that economists use to tease out the lines of cause and effect in complex situations.
What do you think? Any examples on meaningful experiments in R&D management?