Knowledge usage in new product development (NPD)
conference contributionposted on 05.05.2006, 09:56 by Paul A. Rodgers, P. John Clarkson
New product development (NPD) can be described as both complex and multidisciplinary, and also as an activity that often requires significant amounts of design knowledge. Typically, there will be a large body of knowledge that designers can call upon, and use, during the design process from many areas including human factors, materials, business, manufacturing technologies and so on. The provision of this knowledge to designers during the design process is vital to the successful development of the product or system being designed, and to the future competitiveness of the company involved. Given that even the most routine of design tasks is dependent upon vast amounts of expert knowledge and supporting information, there is an obvious need for some sort of support which will free designers from much of the drudgery involved in searching and locating appropriate knowledge. This paper presents the findings from an initial review of designers knowledge needs in small-to-medium sized enterprises (SMEs) who are involved in new product design and development. This review forms part of a larger ongoing study which is concerned with the development of a support framework for representing and providing design knowledge.
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