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Modelling and forecasting industrial innovations via the transfer function S-shaped learning curve

  • M. M. Naim
  • D. R. Towill
Article

Abstract

Algorithms are derived for the four-parameter transfer function S-shaped curve, using a least-squared-error (LSE) method for an exponential function. The S-shaped curve is just one in a family of industrial dynamics learning-curve models of increasing complexity which may be used to replicate and forecast the start-up of industrial innovations.

Controlled experiments are undertaken, via simulation of “message” and “noise”, to test the modelling and forecasting capabilities of the algorithms. A number of strategies are introduced to improve forecasting performance, such as “boots-trapping”, sequential and parallel adaptation, and alternatively adopting the simplified three-parameter S-curve model.

Four examples of modelling industrial innovations via the transfer function learning curve models are presented. The paper concludes that although there is now the capability to model the general four-parameter S-curve, its applications are limited. This is because simpler (and hence less accurate) transfer function models tend to be more robust.

Keywords

S-shaped learning curve Industrial innovations Modelling Forecasting Simulation modelling 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. M. Naim
    • 1
  • D. R. Towill
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Electrical, Electronic and Systems EngineeringUniversity of Wales College of CardiffCardiffUK

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