Navigating the common approaches to product development

DS 87-9 Proceedings of the 21st International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED 17) Vol 9: Design Education, 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: Vance, Julia K.; Giambalvo, Jack; Hoffenson, Steven
Series: ICED
Institution: Stevens Institute of Technology, United States of America
Section: Design Education
Page(s): 169-178
ISBN: 978-1-904670-97-1
ISSN: 2220-4342


Many design approaches are used and taught in industry and academia, and it is difficult even for seasoned design professionals to know which to use. These design approaches were developed in different disciplines with a unique purpose or application in mind. To help practitioners, educators, and students navigate these approaches, a new way to communicate the similarities and differences and the strengths and weaknesses of common design environments, processes, and methods is needed. This study presents a review of some common approaches used in product development: design thinking, systems thinking, total quality management, agile design, waterfall process, engineering design process, spiral model, Vee model, axiomatic design, value driven design, lean manufacturing, six sigma, theory of constraints, and decision based design. This review revealed a set of key criteria for differentiating these approaches from one another, and a visual representation is proposed to identify the key characteristics of each approach and how they compare and overlap with one another. This analysis and representation can be used to help designers and students choose the best approach for a project.

Keywords: Design engineering, Design education, Design methodology, New product development


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