IEEE Transactions on  ENGINEERING MANAGEMENT Special Issue: Innovation in Design Processes

Guest Editors

Dr Claudia Eckert – School of Engineering and Innovation, The Open University –

Dr. Jianxi Luo – Engineering Product Development Pillar and SUTD-MIT International Design Centre, Singapore University of Technology and Design –


The technological products and systems that we design and use today are increasingly complex and interlinked (de Weck et al., 2011). New technologies (e.g., machine learning/AI, VR/AR, 3D printing) have emerged which open new possibilities for companies to produce more efficient and more capable products that meet the challenges of the 21st century. Effective implementation of these new technologies together with existing technologies and products will require a greater integration of disciplines such as mechanical engineering, software engineering and electrical engineering with skills from product design, human machine interaction, universal design, and so on. Meanwhile we see a surge of new paradigms (e.g., design thinking, lean start-up methodology, data-driven design, crowd-funding and crowd-sourcing) adopted by practitioners (Brown, 2009; Ries, 2012; Kim et al. 2017), which challenge the traditional ways in which companies operate and collaborate in design processes.

The design processes are also involving larger multidisciplinary teams and more dispersed collaboration, and integrate more diverse prior knowledge, technologies and legacy systems (Luo and Wood, 2017). The R&D organizations, development processes and supply chains of many products have become truly global requiring a deep understanding of different cultures and regulatory systems. This means that designers and managers are faced with growing complexity and uncertainty in the design process arising from the products, organizations, supply chains as well as the markets in which they operate. Such trends heighten the need for innovation and improvements in the design process (see recent reviews by Sivam et al. 2015; Wynn et al. 2017; Eckert et al. 2017; Jarratt et al. 2011; Browning 2016; Browning and Ramasesh, 2007). Companies are looking for new methods, tools and support to coordinate design activities and to plan, structure and manage processes.

Yet the responses to these new challenges and opportunities in terms of structuring and managing the engineering design processes are only emerging. Different communities of practice and research communities from the different fields of engineering, information systems and the management need to come together to address them.

This special issue aims to foster this collaboration across fields and to explore the latest, emerging and innovative concepts, methodologies, tools and strategies for structuring, managing and planning design processes, in order to shed light on future directions of design research, education and practices. The special issue welcomes contributions in the following areas, but is not limited to them:

  • New design for X approaches
  • Design processes for new paradigms
  • Tools and methods for managing design processes
  • Supply chain management for complex products
  • Simulation in design processes

Submission Process

Please prepare the manuscript according to IEEE-TEM’s guidelines and submit to the journal’s Manuscript Central site. Please clearly state in the cover letter that the submission is for this special issue.


Interested authors send abstracts by October 31st 2018

Decisions on acceptance of abstracts by January 31st 2019

Papers submitted by July 31st 2019


  • de Weck, O., Roos, D., Magee, C. L. (2011), Engineering Systems: Meeting Human Needs in a Complex Technological World, MIT Press, Cambridge, MA
  • Ries, E. (2011), The Lean Startup, Crown Business.
  • Brown, T. (2008), Design thinking,” Harvard Business Review, Cambridge, MA
  • Kim, H. M., Liu, Y., Wang, C.L., Yan, W. (2017), Special issue: Data-driven design (D3), Journal of Mechanical Design, 139(11), 110301
  • Luo, J. and Wood, K.L. (2017), The growing complexity in invention process. Research in Engineering Design, 28(4), 421-435.
  • Siyam, G. I., Wynn, D. C., & Clarkson, P. J. (2015). Review of value and lean in complex product development. Systems Engineering, 18(2), 192-207.
  • Wynn, D. C., & Eckert, C. M. (2017). Perspectives on iteration in design and development. Research in Engineering Design, 28(2), 153-184.
  • Eckert, Claudia M., David C. Wynn, Jakob F. Maier, Albert Albers, Nikola Bursac, Hilario L. Xin Chen, P. John Clarkson, Kilian Gericke, Bartosz Gladysz, and Daniel Shapiro. “On the integration of product and process models in engineering design.” Design Science 3 (2017).
  • Jarratt, T. A. W., Eckert, C. M., Caldwell, N. H., & Clarkson, P. J. (2011). Engineering change: an overview and perspective on the literature. Research in engineering design, 22(2), 103-124#
  • Browning, T. R. (2016). Design structure matrix extensions and innovations: a survey and new opportunities. IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management, 63(1), 27-52.
  • Browning, T. R., & Ramasesh, R. V. (2007). A survey of activity network‐based process models for managing product development projects. Production and operations management, 16(2), 217-240.

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