Competitive Intelligence

Tactical, Operational & Strategic Analysis of Markets, Competitors & Industries

This link is to an article about how video gaming might help forensic investigators determine what happened at the scene of a crime.

Do you think there could be an application for CI? Scenario Planning? Strategic planning in a virtual world? I can see implications for market research where you categorize consumer behavior and then play the game based on collaborative experience to determing things like optimal merchandising or product development.

Anyone else have any creative thoughts?

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Thanks for this Melanie. Reading through the article it smacks of IT centric war games or war rooms, which perhaps will only be tolerated by specific cultures who 'value' and 'rate' that kind of delivery back. In an increasingly complex world, keeping it simple appears to be an increasing order of the day. Put the simplicity back into complex.
Dear Andrew,

Way back in 1994, in - between Board Meetings, Skip Schwartz, CEO, InterHealth, Canada was mentoring me and he said:

"In Simplicity lies Complexity and in Complexity lies Simplicity".

Here's my thought: Have you ever player Sid Meier's Civilization? You start with one of the world's great cultures from a single village and end up trying to put colonists on Alpha Centauri or dominate the world, whichever comes first. With an infinity number of variables, you navigate the decisions of other rulers and random chance to end up at your goal, whether it's cultural, scientific, or imperial.

I heard the Pentagon was using some crude apps in Second Life to teach officers complex decision making. Civilization, if tweaked to include geopolitical, economic, and scientific trends, would actually be the ideal platform.

Plus, I have spent around three consecutive years of my life on this otherwise pointless activity, and it would be neat to reap a professional reward from it.

Seriously, I believe the applications exist for a really excellent, next generation method to teach strategic thinking. In my opinion, they will look much more like video games and much less like Harvard case studies.
Great question, Melanie. It's a great concept. We have asked about six or seven people at Internet gaming companies and every person said about the same thing, "That sounds like a great idea; it's just so different from what we do I do not know who you should contact here - except maybe the CEO because we certainly don't do that today."

Because it might take a lot of work thinking about new designs, etc., for a new type of application and user, we have framed the question as simple as, "Are you interested in a joint venture for a Multi-User Internet Strategy Game where you can use an existing or even old game - just use our competitive intelligence as input for the Players (competitors)? At we have line-of-business information which we imagine can represent the individual "battles". And we also believe it would be a great arena to test alliances. For example, imagine Microsoft + HP versus IBM, and then let the Oracle user decide if she/he wants to make it a three-way fight or join one of the other developing "ecosystems" - each of which can include up to 100 companies. Again, the multiple "battles" would be at the line of business level. In our database, the average Global 1000 company competes in 52 lines of business.

If anyone knows of a game developer who wants to experiment using our global industry and company database as input for scenario planning for forming alliances - please let me know. Thanks :)

P.S. - I can see this group and the SCIP LinkedIn group and our "Corporate Planning & Global Industry Segmentation" LinkedIn group as great places to find users willing to test the multi-player system.
P.P.S. - If there are other CI vendors that want to add their capabilities to our line-of-business information to add to the "game" - call me.

P.P.P.S. - SCIP or some MBA school or some "Intelligence Collaborative organization dedicated to Uniting information and analytic professionals of every type to understand, interpret and anticipate change in business, society and the world beyond" (meaning: Arik) should Sponsor the creation of a "virtual world for CI" practitioners, as Melanie suggests.
Like Eric I have heard about Second Life being used to help military folks suffering from war scars to acclimate back into life after war. I could also see video gaming used for wargaming, if it isn't already.

On the consumer side, I could also see video games used to set up displays, and gauging consumer behavior based on some variables: price, position, the competition, know the drill. It could get people thinking about this and visualizing the "shopping" experience from various places within a company.

Happy New Year!

Have you never played these games?
I bought two books called "I spy" and they are very interesting. You can measure your ability in observation and memory. This is for fun of course!
Taking this discussion more seriously, I am wondering if there is any CI game.



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