Experience is indispensable to R&D and manufacturing. Products cannot be made from theory alone.
In the case of ceramics, anyone can study and understand that mixing and forming powders into a desired shape and sintering it will produce a ceramic product. But what "mixing" really is can only be learned through experience using your own hands. Liquids and gases can be perfectly mixed - but knowing exactly how to mix powders, and for how long, can only be learned through experience.
Experience and theory must be integrated before any outstanding manufacturing or technological achievement can result.