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A Model-Based Framework to Overlap Product Development Activities


Author Info

  • Viswanathan Krishnan

    (Management Department, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, Texas 78712)

  • Steven D. Eppinger

    (Sloan School of Management, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139)

  • Daniel E. Whitney

    (Center for Technology, Policy and Industrial Development, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02139)

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    Intense competition in many industries forces manufacturing firms to develop new, higher quality products at an increasingly rapid pace. Overlapping product development activities is an important component of concurrent product development that can help firms develop products faster. However, since product development activities may be coupled in complex ways, overlapping interrelated activities can present many difficulties. Without careful management of the overlapped product development process, the development effort and cost may increase, and product quality may worsen. This paper goes beyond the common recommendation to simply overlap activities as much as possible. We present a model-based framework to manage the overlapping of coupled product development activities. The model and framework identify conditions under which various types of overlapping are appropriate for a pair of coupled activities. We illustrate the model and framework with industrial applications involving the development of electronic pagers and automobile doors.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by INFORMS in its journal Management Science.

    Volume (Year): 43 (1997)
    Issue (Month): 4 (April)
    Pages: 437-451

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    Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:43:y:1997:i:4:p:437-451

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    Related research

    Keywords: product development; concurrent engineering; overlapping;


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    Cited by:
    1. Rummel, Jeffrey L. & Walter, Zhiping & Dewan, Rajiv & Seidmann, Abraham, 2005. "Activity consolidation to improve responsiveness," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 161(3), pages 683-703, March.
    2. Rauniar, Rupak & Doll, William & Rawski, Greg & Hong, Paul, 2008. "Shared knowledge and product design glitches in integrated product development," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 114(2), pages 723-736, August.
    3. Chakravarty, Amiya K., 2001. "Overlapping design and build cycles in product development," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 134(2), pages 392-424, October.
    4. Joglekar, Nitindra R., 2003. "Performance of coupled product development activities with a deadline," Working papers WP 4122-00., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
    5. Bordley, Robert F. & Pollock, Stephen M., 2012. "Assigning resources and targets to an organization’s activities," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 220(3), pages 752-761.
    6. Valle, Sandra & Vázquez-Bustelo, Daniel, 2009. "Concurrent engineering performance: Incremental versus radical innovation," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 119(1), pages 136-148, May.
    7. van Donselaar, Karel & Rock Kopczak, Laura & Wouters, Marc, 2001. "The use of advance demand information in a project-based supply chain," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 130(3), pages 519-538, May.
    8. Joglekar, Nitin R. & Ford, David N., 2005. "Product development resource allocation with foresight," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 160(1), pages 72-87, January.
    9. Sosa, Manuel E., 2003. "Factors that influence technical communication in distributed product development : an empirical study in the telecommunications industry," Working papers WP 4123-00., Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.
    10. Paulo J. Gomes & Nitin R. Joglekar, 2008. "Linking modularity with problem solving and coordination efforts," Managerial and Decision Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 29(5), pages 443-457.
    11. Susan Bogus & Keith Molenaar & James Diekmann, 2006. "Strategies for overlapping dependent design activities," Construction Management and Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 24(8), pages 829-837.
    12. Whitney, Daniel & Eppinger, Steven D. & Yassine, Ali & Joglekar, Nitin & Braha, Dan, 2002. "Information Hiding in Product Development: The Design Churn Effect," Working papers 4333-02, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Sloan School of Management.


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