A Conceptual Foresight Model to Investigate the Adoption of Radio Frequency Identification Technology in the English National Health Service

  • Mohsan Hussain

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


Radio Frequency Identification Technology (RFID) adoption in healthcare settings has the potential to reduce errors, improve patient safety, streamline operational processes and enable the sharing of information throughout supply chains. RFID adoption in the English NHS is limited to isolated pilot studies. Firstly, this study investigates the drivers and inhibitors to RFID adoption in the English NHS from the perspective of the GS1 Healthcare User Group (HUG) tasked with coordinating adoption across private and public sectors.
Secondly a conceptual model has been developed and deployed, combining two of foresight’s most popular methods; scenario planning and technology roadmapping. The model addresses the weaknesses of each foresight technique as well as capitalizing on their individual, inherent strengths.
Semi structured interviews, scenario planning workshops and a technology roadmapping exercise were conducted with the members of the HUG over an 18-month period. An action research mode of enquiry was utilized with a thematic analysis approach for the identification and discussion of the drivers and inhibitors of RFID adoption. The results of the conceptual model are analysed in comparison to other similar models.
There are implications for managers responsible for RFID adoption in both the NHS and its commercial partners, and for foresight practitioners. Managers can leverage the insights gained from identifying the drivers and inhibitors to RFID adoption by making efforts to influence the removal of inhibitors and supporting the continuation of the drivers. The academic contribution of this aspect of the thesis is in the field of RFID adoption in healthcare settings. Drivers and inhibitors to RFID adoption in the English NHS are compared to those found in other settings. The implication for technology foresight practitioners is a proof of concept of a model combining scenario planning and technology roadmapping using a novel process. The academic contribution to the field of technology foresight is the conceptual development of
foresight model that combines two popular techniques and then a deployment of the conceptual foresight model in a healthcare setting exploring the future of RFID technology.
Date of Award4 Jul 2016
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorLouise A Knight (Supervisor) & Efstathios Tapinos (Supervisor)


  • Technology Adoption
  • RFID
  • Foresight
  • Healthcare

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