Analyzing Awareness, Decision, and Outcome Sequences of Project Design Groups: A Platform for Instrumentation of Workshop-Based Experiments

  • Carl Fruehling
  • Bryan R. MoserEmail author
Conference paper


Activity dependencies gain importance as engineering programs become more complex and global. We treat the planning of engineering programs and projects as a collaborative exercise by teams to design their shared project. An Awareness-Decision model and sensors for measurement were developed to correlate attentions and actions to outcomes during project design. A cloud-based platform allows teams to model projects and to simulate a project’s cost and duration. This approach enables efficient deployment of experiments with global project design groups. During experimental sessions, we captured attention allocation, project change and performance data across 38 groups at three global sites to explore their decision-making process and exploration of the cost-duration-tradespace. In this set of experiments, the groups that were stimulated to pay more attention to dependencies did not show a correlation with improved outcomes. Employing several sequence analyses, including return time distribution, proximity walk, element focus, and vision distribution, we attempted to draw insights on awareness and attention to dependence and overall outcomes. Based on our analysis results, we give recommendations for research to more completely expose the role of attention to dependence during project design.


Project Design Complexity management Dependencies Situational awareness Attention allocation Decision-making Project management, team performance Workshop-based experiments 



The authors would like the thank the contributions of the Global Teamwork Lab (GTL) at MIT and University of Tokyo, as well as Dr. Eric Rebentisch of CEPE at MIT and Nepomuk Chucholowski of Technical University of Munich.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Chair of Product DevelopmentTechnical University of MunichMunichGermany
  2. 2.System Design and ManagementMassachusetts Institute of TechnologyCambridgeUSA

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