A CONCEPT DEVELOPMENT SUPPORT TOOL FOR MULTIATTRIBUTE DECISION MAKING
Editor: Lehtonen, Timo; Pulkkinen, Antti and Riitahuhta, Asko
Author: Salonen, Mlkko P.
Page(s): 31 - 41
This paper presents the centric result from a cooperative research project between university and industry partners. The objective of the project was to identify areas in the company's product development process that could benefit from tailored and effective use of existing systematic product development methodologies. Possible areas in the company's product development process were determined by interviewing seven engineers and two industrial designers. Through conducted research and analyses, it was concluded that the concept development phase was a potential area for use of design methodologies and focus was seen to be put on support of the concept development phase as a whole, project input information, and evaluation and decision making in concept development. The aim of this paper is to present the principles of a created support tool for these areas of concept development. The conducted research and the created tool have shown immediate industrial contribution through the good reception of the tool in practice. The academic contribution of the work can be divided into two areas: results that are immediate and results that are later gained through the possibility to evaluate the use of concept development methodology in practice. Immediate academic contributions include the documentation of an approach to justifiably combine three separate design methods. This approach enables the use of new graphical approaches for evaluating concept variants and comparing them against each other. In addition, the use of non-linear preferences in concept selection is discussed.