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Problem Formulation in Planning and Design

Listed author(s):
  • Roger J. Volkema

    (University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire)

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    This paper deals with the role of problem formulation in planning and design, including: (a) the importance of problem formulation to planning and design; (b) problematic, physiological, psychological and environmental factors that can affect the formulation process; and (c) problem formulation heuristics. Two types of formulation heuristics are identified---problem reduction and problem expansion. Because the latter type has received little empirical research, an initial study of a problem expansion heuristic (Problem-Purpose Expansion) was conducted. Experimentation showed that Problem-Purpose Expansion may have a positive effect on idea generation, particularly for individuals working on problems that fall outside their area of expertise. Exhorting the importance of problem formulation, a second treatment studied in these experiments, produced little measurable effect on idea generation.

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    Article provided by INFORMS in its journal Management Science.

    Volume (Year): 29 (1983)
    Issue (Month): 6 (June)
    Pages: 639-652

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    Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:29:y:1983:i:6:p:639-652
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