Journal of Engineering Design
Taylor & Francis
This research examines higher order design structure matrices as requirements change modelling tools to predict requirement change propagation through two large-scale industry design projects. Due to the iterative nature of design, requirements will evolve and change. Changes in requirements can propagate to other requirements on different subsystems leading to possible increases in the project cost and lead-time. Predicting these requirement changes enables the designers to foresee unanticipated changes and maximises the probability for the project's success. These studies reveal that second-order relationships are influential in predicting requirement change propagation. Unforeseen propagation occurring in first-order form was rare, rather it was occurring in second order. Modelling requirements change exposes these secondary relationships early in the engineering change (EC) definition process, thereby enhancing the decision-making process and augmenting cost estimation. A modelling tool, such as that proposed in this paper, can provide the designer insight into the requirements which may be affected before approving an EC.
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