Building a Common Language of Design Representations for Industrial Designers & Engineering Designers

Tuesday 14/09/2010 12pm-1:00pm
Location: Brunel Design, Tower A, Room TA049
Speaker: Dr Eujin Pei, Loughborough University

To achieve success in today’s competitive environment, companies are realising the importance of design collaboration during new product development. The aim of this research is to develop a collaborative design tool for use by industrial designers and engineering designers. Three problem areas are identified: conflicts in values and principles; differences in education; and differences in representational tools and methods. The problem area of design representations was chosen as it was found to be highly significant.

In looking at bridging differences in design representations, a taxonomy comprising 35 forms of sketches, drawings, models and prototypes was generated. A second stage of empirical research was conducted to establish the popularity of each representation and the type of design / technical information that industrial designers and engineering designers communicated with. The information was indexed into CoLab cards that would enable them to gain joint understanding and create shared knowledge when using representations.

This seminar will address the types of visual design representations used by both disciplines in the design process and whether a common ground in visual design representations will support collaboration between the two disciplines. The research is a step towards the prospect of achieving a common ground between industrial designers and engineering designers in new product development.