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Design Structure Matrix Methods and Applications


  • Eppinger, Steven D.

    () (MIT Sloan School of Management)

  • Browning, Tyson R.

    () (TCU Neeley School of Business)


Design structure matrix (DSM) is a straightforward and flexible modeling technique that can be used for designing, developing, and managing complex systems. DSM offers network modeling tools that represent the elements of a system and their interactions, thereby highlighting the system’s architecture (or designed structure). Its advantages include compact format, visual nature, intuitive representation, powerful analytical capacity, and flexibility. Used primarily so far in the area of engineering management, DSM is increasingly being applied to complex issues in health care management, financial systems, public policy, natural sciences, and social systems. This book offers a clear and concise explanation of DSM methods for practitioners and researchers. The book’s four sections correspond to the four primary types of DSM models, offering tools for representing product architectures, organization architectures, process architectures, and multidomain architectures (which combine different types of DSM models to represent multiple domains simultaneously). In each section, a chapter introducing the technique is followed by a chapter of examples showing a variety of applications of that DSM type. The forty-four applications represent a wide range of industries (including automotive, aerospace, electronics, building, and pharmaceutical), countries (among them Australia, Germany, Japan, Turkey, and the United State), and problems addressed (modularity, outsourcing, system integration, knowledge management, and others).

Suggested Citation

  • Eppinger, Steven D. & Browning, Tyson R., 2012. "Design Structure Matrix Methods and Applications," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262017520, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:mtp:titles:0262017520

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    Cited by:

    1. Junguang Zhang & Xiwei Song & Hongyu Chen & Ruixia (Sandy) Shi, 2016. "Determination of critical chain project buffer based on information flow interactions," Journal of the Operational Research Society, Palgrave Macmillan;The OR Society, vol. 67(9), pages 1146-1157, September.
    2. Robert Schmidt & Kasper Sanchez Vibaek & Simon Austin, 2014. "Evaluating the adaptability of an industrialized building using dependency structure matrices," Construction Management and Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 32(1-2), pages 160-182, February.
    3. Jeeeun Kim & Sungjoo Lee, 2017. "Forecasting and identifying multi-technology convergence based on patent data: the case of IT and BT industries in 2020," Scientometrics, Springer;Akadémiai Kiadó, vol. 111(1), pages 47-65, April.
    4. Zhang, Junguang & Song, Xiwei & Díaz, Estrella, 2016. "Project buffer sizing of a critical chain based on comprehensive resource tightness," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 248(1), pages 174-182.
    5. Cole, Mara, 2014. "Towards proactive airport security management: Supporting decision making through systematic threat scenario assessment," Journal of Air Transport Management, Elsevier, vol. 35(C), pages 12-18.
    6. Lin, Jun & Qian, Yanjun & Cui, Wentian & Goh, Thong Ngee, 2015. "An effective approach for scheduling coupled activities in development projects," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 243(1), pages 97-108.

    More about this item


    management; systems theory;

    JEL classification:

    • M1 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Administration
    • P0 - Economic Systems - - General


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