A PROTOCOL FOR CONNECTIVE COMPLEXITY TRACKING IN THE ENGINEERING DESIGN PROCESS
DS 68-7: Proceedings of the 18th International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED 11), Impacting Society through Engineering Design, Vol. 7: Human Behaviour in Design, Lyngby/Copenhagen, Denmark, 15.-19.08.2011
Editor: Culley, S.J.; Hicks, B.J.; McAloone, T.C.; Howard, T.J. & Badke-Schaub, P.
Author: Mathieson, James; Miller, Michael; Summers, Joshua
Section: Human Behaviour in Design
The evaluation of design processes is often conducted after the process has been completed or as a case study on a single process. These two approaches each cannot be used to improve an ongoing process and require a great deal of time to generate statistically significant samples. Presented here is a protocol for tracking the interconnection of design process elements as a mixed temporal hypergraph network which may evolve in real time. The protocol uses email and limited human reporting data to develop the time-stamped connections of the network. At any time, this network or a filtered subset of it may be subjected to an analysis of graph and network properties. The response of these properties may then be correlated to either events or performance metrics. Here, this approach is applied to emails generated in the course of an undergraduate mechanical engineering senior design project. This application demonstrates an ability to identify deadlines, member roles, and work schedules from graph and network properties.