Decentralized handling of conflicts in multi-brand engineering change management

DS 87-4 Proceedings of the 21st International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED 17) Vol 4: Design Methods and Tools, Vancouver, Canada, 21-25.08.2017

Year: 2017
Editor: Anja Maier, Stanko Škec, Harrison Kim, Michael Kokkolaras, Josef Oehmen, Georges Fadel, Filippo Salustri, Mike Van der Loos
Author: Hesselmann, Carsten; Kehl, Stefan; Stiefel, Patrick; Müller, Jörg
Series: ICED
Institution: 1: Clausthal University of Technology, Germany; 2: Volkswagen Group, Germany
Section: Design Methods and Tools
Page(s): 683-692
ISBN: 978-1-904670-92-6
ISSN: 2220-4342


Changes on components that are commonly used in different products in multi-brand product development, cause various types of conflicts. This paper considers conflicts of interest among individuals that are caused by differing payoffs each brand would realize if a specific change request were accepted. Following an analysis of requirements on multi-brand engineering change management processes, we propose an approach to model these conflicts using methods from the field of agreement technologies. In particular, we propose voting games as a model and mechanism to represent and reconcile opposing interests and conflicting requirements. In this initial paper, we describe such a mechanism from a conceptual perspective and illustrate our model by using an example agreement process, where commonly used components are defined by different brands and changes on them are voted on in order to determine the set of components that combines the different interests at best. A core element of our approach is a micro-meso-macro coordination architecture that allows to express and reconcile different value systems (e.g. from corporate group, from different brands, down to individual designers).

Keywords: Decision making, Platform strategies, Requirements, Agreement technologies, Engineering change management


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