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How are knowledge and information evaluated?: decision making in stage-gate processes
Luleå tekniska universitet.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-4875-391X
Luleå tekniska universitet. (Entrepreneurship)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3255-414X
Luleå tekniska universitet.
2009 (English)In: Design has never been this cool : ICED 09, the 17th International Conference on Engineering Design ; 24 - 27 August 2009, Stanford University, Stanford, California, USA ; proceedings volume / [ed] Margareta Norell Bergendahl, Martin Grimheden, Larry Leifer, Stanford, CA, USA, 2009, Vol. 17, 195-206 p., 342Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

In stage-gate processes decisions are made based on the knowledge and information developed during the preceding phase. The purpose of this study is to explore the state-of-practice in industry regarding the assessment of knowledge and information at gates. The result indicates that gate reviews relate mainly to assessments of technical performance and function. Relatively little attention is given to assess the quality of the knowledge base, making it difficult to identify outdated, irrelevant and non-applicable information and knowledge. Further, tacit knowledge plays an important role in the decision-making process, as reviewers ask for the design rationale and further evidence of what has been done and why. However, evaluating such knowledge is currently a poorly understood aspect of gate reviews. It is concluded that even though the specific focus of such meetings is not on the evaluation of knowledge and information, the opportunity to work towards a better support of such activities is promising, especially since the respondents perceive the benefits that come from an increased attention to assessments of both the explicit and tacit knowledge base used in gate reviews.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stanford, CA, USA, 2009. Vol. 17, 195-206 p., 342
Keyword [en]
Knowledge Management, Stage-Gate Process, Decision Support, Maturity
National Category
Other Mechanical Engineering
URN: urn:nbn:se:bth-12104ISBN: 978-1-904670-05-6OAI: diva2:938117
International Conference on Engineering Design
Faste Laboratory
Available from: 2016-06-16 Created: 2016-06-16 Last updated: 2016-06-17Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Knowledge maturity as decision support in stage-gate product development: a case from the aerospace industry
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Knowledge maturity as decision support in stage-gate product development: a case from the aerospace industry
2009 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In today’s fast-paced industry where fight for market share is fierce and reaching the market ahead of competition imperative, product development is a target for lead-time reductions. In this context, in product development in stage-gate processes, decisions need to be made even though knowledge and information are scarce and flawed. The challenge is how to support the decisions that are made in light of uncertainty and ambiguity. The thesis moves from analysing the role of the stage-gate process within the aerospace industry. The stage-gate process was more than a decision making mechanism, and instead a mechanism that facilitated communication, discussion and knowledge sharing between team members, as well as supported knowledge creation and shaping of the boundaries between people’s different perceptions of the knowledge base. However, the communicative and negotiative function of the stage-gate was highly dependent on the ability of the participating individuals to reflect on the status and quality of the available knowledge assets used throughout the process. To make this reflective activity an explicit part of the stage-gate practice, this thesis proposes the application of a knowledge maturity concept at the gates to raise the decision makers’ awareness of the status of the knowledge assets handled at the decision point. The knowledge maturity concept considers three basic dimensions: input, method/tool and experience/expertise in assessing the knowledge base maturity. The scale is intended to act as a boundary object, facilitating the knowledge creation process by highlighting the current status of the knowledge base and making stakeholders aware of the nature of the project’s uncertainties and ambiguities. In the knowledge maturity concept, its purpose is to support design teams at the gates in taking appropriate action, mitigating risk and focusing their efforts on improving the knowledge assets where it is needed most, regarding the situation at hand and, finally, to make more confident decisions.The thesis was developed within the EU FP6 VIVACE (Value Improvement through a Virtual Aeronautical Collaborative Enterprise) and EU FP7 CRESCENDO (Collaborative and Robust Engineering using Simulation Capability Enabling Next Design Optimisation) projects, and within the Faste Laboratory, a VINNOVA Excellence Centre involving partners from the Swedish manufacturing industry.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Luleå: Luleå tekniska universitet, 2009. 67 p.
, Doctoral thesis / Luleå University of Technology, ISSN 1402-1544
Knowledge Maturity, Knowledge Management, Stage-Gate, Decision Support, Product Development, Product-Service Systems, Aerospace
National Category
Other Mechanical Engineering
urn:nbn:se:bth-12129 (URN)978-91-7439-050-6 (ISBN)
Public defence
2009-12-18, B192, Luleå, 01:15 (English)
EU, FP7, Seventh Framework ProgrammeVINNOVA
Available from: 2016-06-17 Created: 2016-06-17 Last updated: 2016-06-17Bibliographically approved

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