Naturally emerging decision criteria in product concept evaluation

Jan B. Nikander*, Lassi A. Liikkanen, Miko Laakso

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Successful concept selection is of paramount importance in the early phases of new product development. Concept decisions define the success of both the project and the product to a great extent. Previous research has shown that structured methods are often not used properly or at all in design practice. To shed light on the dynamics of concept selection in real life, we studied decision strategies and the use of decision criteria in concept selection. The experiment involved sixteen professional designers and utilized mixed methods, including verbal protocol analysis. The participants used a great variety of evaluation styles and criteria, sometimes changing them in midst of evaluation. Furthermore, some internal conflicts appeared between different concept evaluation tasks. These findings put designers' ability to make rational and good concept decisions under some doubt. Further research on human behavior in concept selection is deemed necessary and some prospective research questions are introduced.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 19th International Conference on Engineering Design: Design for Harmonies, ICED 2013
Number of pages10
Volume7 DS75-07
Publication statusPublished - 2013
MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventInternational Conference on Engineering Design - Seoul, Korea, Republic of
Duration: 19 Aug 201322 Aug 2013
Conference number: 19


ConferenceInternational Conference on Engineering Design
Abbreviated titleICED
CountryKorea, Republic of


  • Concept evaluation
  • Decision making
  • Early design phases
  • Human behaviour in design

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