The Brakes Go On In R&D

When George M. C. Fisher, chairman of Motorola Inc., mapped out research and development plans for 1990, he did what few executives dared: He raised R&D expenditures as a percentage of sales and profits and expanded the company's research horizons. Fisher is wary of what he calls U. S. industry's "rifle-shot" approach to R&D--focusing on small improvements in product development at the expense of riskier but potentially market-shaping research. "The more corporate R&D drifts toward the `R,' " he says, "the less of a rifle shot it is." So again this year, Motorola is "moving more investment toward the `R' side."

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