Since the 1980s, the Stage-Gate® system has been systematically built upon in leading companies worldwide. Dr. Robert “Bob” G. Cooper has been analyzing the current practices of the most successful innovation systems and has described them in each new version of his bestselling books, "Winning at New Products." In the fall of 2017, Dr. Bob Cooper published the 5th edition, introducing a new generation of the Stage-Gate system.

Anyone still using an outdated Stage-Gate system is likely stuck in the 1990s, and is missing significant enhancements in relation to:

  • the success rate of innovation projects,
  • the time-to-market of new products, and
  • the motivation within project teams.

For example, in the 2nd generation (published in 1993), Dr. Bob Cooper integrated the results of the then current success factors research (e.g. interdisciplinary teams, profound homework before development, etc.). In the 3rd generation (2000), Cooper focused on accelerating new product projects. The 4th generation (2011) then revealed Spiral Development (regular customer feedback loops), as well as Lean and Open Innovation into the Stage-Gate systems. The 5th generation (2017), Beyond Stage-Gate, addresses the challenge of “Bold Innovation in Record Time.”

How current is the Stage-Gate system in your company?

You can determine your capabilities by checking whether your innovation system methodically and consistently ensures the following practices:

  1. In all stages, we set activities to understand application and application environment as well as customer needs in depth.
  2. In our innovation projects, an interdisciplinary project team is responsible for the results -- from concept to development, then through to successfully implementing new market performances.
  3. We focus our resources on the best projects that add the most value. That means we stop projects at gates, even if it hurts.

If these three statements apply to the innovation practice of your company, the diagnosis is: old but good! Your organization probably implemented a Stage-Gate process from generations 2 or 3. It could be worthwhile to consider further developments. For more, download the whitepaper Beyond Stage-Gate®: Bold Innovation in Record Time and dive deep into what’s new in Cooper’s latest edition of Stage-Gate and what the implications are for your enterprise.

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If any part of 1), 2) or 3) is missing from your standard business practice, it may be time to renovate the cornerstones of the Stage-Gate system before heading for Beyond Stage-Gate.

The above is an excerpt from the whitepaper, Beyond Stage-Gate®: Bold Innovation in Record Time, written by five is innovation management’s Mag. Peter Fürst and Dr. Angelika Dreher.

Interested in more? Five is innovation management hosts regular training sessions in Germany, many alongside Dr. Bob Cooper.

Seminar Photos

Here are a few photos of past seminars with five is, Dr. Bob Cooper and Sopheon.

stage-gate system photos with HC Eppich, Dr. Bob Cooper, Dr. Angelika Dreher

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Interested in working with five is innovation management? Contact them.

Interested in working with Sopheon? Contact us.

Related Resources


Stage-Gate® is a registered trademark of Stage-Gate Inc.

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