Estimating the impact of systems engineers on systems design processes

DS 87-3 Proceedings of the 21st International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED 17) Vol 3: Product, Services and Systems Design, Vancouver, Canada, 21-25.08.2017

Year: 2017
Editor: Anja Maier, Stanko Škec, Harrison Kim, Michael Kokkolaras, Josef Oehmen, Georges Fadel, Filippo Salustri, Mike Van der Loos
Author: Collopy, Arianne; Greene, Melissa; Adar, Eytan; Papalambros, Panos
Series: ICED
Institution: University of Michigan, United States of America
Section: Product, Services and Systems Design
Page(s): 311-320
ISBN: 978-1-904670-91-9
ISSN: 2220-4342


In this work we develop an understanding of how systems engineers or system integrators can mediate communication channels within a design organization, leading to increased technical success where otherwise no coordination is observed. The models developed here are offered as alternative explanations for observed communication or coordination gaps between design groups working on connected technical subsystems. The results of analysis of simulated organizational network data indicate that systems engineers in mediating roles can improve the probability of technical success as estimated by communication path length within the organizational network. This suggests that roles beyond those directly involved in design tasks should be considered in organizational models used to predict technical system performance.

Keywords: Systems Engineering (SE), Organizational processes, Large-scale engineering systems, Network modelling


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