An Innovative Matrix-Based Approach for Designing Product Variety


  • Yao-Tsung Ko



New product development (NPD) and innovation are key factors that affect a company’s long-term survival and growth. The design process is an important stage in new product development (NPD). Based on graph theory and the weighting concept, this paper presents a Quantified Design Structure Matrix (QDSM) which is a systematic planning method of optimizing design priorities and product architecture for managing product variety from an informational structure perspective. Focusing on product variety and the design process in concurrent engineering (CE), the planning model is divided into two phases: global planning and local planning. The proposed method helps designers optimize the design planning and plan better design strategies for product variety. A case study is used to illustrate this method. The results verify that designers may concurrently create variant design solutions in a product family that can meet different market needs without extra effort being spent on redundant design loops.

Author Biography

Yao-Tsung Ko

Yao-Tsung Ko is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Industrial Design, Tunghai University, Taiwan, Republic of China. He received his Ph.D. degree in Industrial Design from National Cheng Kung University in 2009. His research interests include industrial design, fuzzy set theory, computer-aided design, concurrent engineering, design management, innovation design, and new product development.