New Perspectives in the Quest for Unification of ‘Lean’ with Traditional Engineering Design Methodology

  • Sören UlonskaEmail author
  • Torgeir Welo
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Production Engineering book series (LNPE)


In an increasingly competitive business world, engineering companies need to improve their capability in developing products that offer high value to customers. In this connection, the Toyota Product Development System—commonly referred to as ‘LeanProduct Development—is a benchmark for effective, new practices across industries. Lean contains many of the same elements astraditional engineering design methodologies, developed in the 1970-80s, which describe systematic design and engineering processes. However, the former differs through its philosophical nature—rather than being a methodology or tool—as well as its focus on increasing effectiveness through waste reduction.

In this paper, a literature review of the traditional, systematic product engineering/development methodologies and the more recent lean concept is conducted. Both approaches are analyzed, providing a discussion as to what extent traditional methodologies include elements of lean-thinking and to what extent the associated product engineering processes are lean.


product development lean design methods research 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Engineering Design and MaterialsNorwegian University of Science and TechnologyTrondheimNorway

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