Research in Engineering Design

, Volume 10, Issue 3, pp 178–188

Effective practices in design transfer

Article

Abstract

The notion of transferring existing design solutions to new design problems is a basic one. Transfer provides a means of tackling increasing complexity, of limiting risks and costs, and of capitalizing on experience. In practice, in design organizations, it can be hard to judge the outcome of transfer because there can be several, often obscure benefits and drawbacks. This work is therefore an attempt to identify effective practices towards transfer on the part of designers and design managers. It is based on a qualitative analysis of 50 unstructured interviews carried out with members of two commercial design organizations. The practices were classified inductively in 15 main categories, of which the most heavily populated were associativity-improving, criteria-broadening, effort-reducing, environment-influencing, error-averting and motivation-addressing. The results have both a practical relevance (since most of the effective practices could be readily taught to novice designers) and a more theoretical relevance (showing what designers believe makes design transfer problematic).

Keywords

Management Organizations Practices Reuse Transfer 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. 1.
    Lawson B (1990). How Designers Think. Butterworth Architecture, London, p. 2.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Condoor SS, Shankar SR, Brock HR, Burger CP and Jansson DG (1992). A cognitive framework for the design process. Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Design Theory and Methodology, Scottsdale, AR, 13–16 September, 277–281.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Guindon R (1990). Designing the design process: exploiting opportunistic thoughts. Human-Computer Interaction, 5, 305–344.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Jansson DG and SM Smith (1991). Design fixation. Design Studies, 12(1), 3–11.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Singley MK and Anderson JR (1989). The transfer of cognitive skill, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Gentner D (1983). Structure-mapping: a theoretical framework for analogy. Cogitive Science, 7, 155–170.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Carroll JM and Mack RL (1985). Metaphor, computer systems, and active learning. International Journal of Man-Machine Studies, 22, 39–57.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Lave J (1988). Cognition in Practice, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Woodfield SN, Embley DW and Scott DT (1987). Can programmers reuse software? IEEE Software, July, 52–60.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Geary K (1988). The practicalities of introducing largescale software re-use. Software Engineering Journal, 3, 172–176.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Lenz M, Schmid HA and Wolf PF (1987). Software reuse through building blocks. IEEE Software, July, 34–51.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Jackson D and Jackson M (1996). Problem decomposition for reuse. Software Engineering Journal, 11, 19–30.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Banker RD, Kauffman RJ and Zweig D (1993). Repository evaluation of software reuse. IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, 19, 379–389.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Burton BA, Aragon RW, Bailey SW, Koehler KD and Mayes LA (1987). The reusable software library. IEEE Software, July, 25–33.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Busby JS (1998). Causal explanations of the absence of reuse in engineering design organizations. Proc. Engineering Design Conference EDC'98, Brunel University, London 23–25 June, 475–482.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Mili H, Mili F and Mili A (1995). Reusing software: issues and research directions. IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, 21(6), 528–562.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Sycara KP and Navinchandra D (1989). Integrating case-based reasoning and qualitative reasoning in engineering design. In Gero JS (ed.), Artificial Intelligence in Design, Springer-Verlag, Berlin, 321–350.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Industrial and Manufacturing ScienceCranfield UniversityCranfieldUK

Personalised recommendations