Proposal of Cluster Analysis Method for Products Considering Exploration and Exploitation in Engineering Design

DS 122: Proceedings of the Design Society: 24th International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED23)

Year: 2023
Editor: Kevin Otto, Boris Eisenbart, Claudia Eckert, Benoit Eynard, Dieter Krause, Josef Oehmen, Nad├Ęge Troussier
Author: Okamoto, Masahiro; Murakami, Tamotsu
Series: ICED
Institution: The University of Tokyo
Section: Design Methods
Page(s): 2995-3004
DOI number:


It is important for organizations to balance exploration and exploitation in order to respond quickly and sustainably to the needs of society and users in a rapidly changing business environment. However, there is insufficient research on design methods to balance exploration and exploitation in product design, and a method to objectively identify the product groups to be balanced has not yet been established. In this paper, on the basis of the characteristics of exploration and exploitation in design, a cluster analysis using functional and attribute distances between products is proposed. To validate the proposed method, it was applied to past product cases in which the relationship between exploration and exploitation was known. The results showed that in the cases of cameras, in addition to known product groups forming large clusters, reasonable minor classifications that had not been identified were also obtained. This indicates that the proposed method is capable of analyzing reasonable clusters in the cases and is potentially effective in identifying product groups taking into consideration the relationship between exploration and exploitation.

Keywords: Exploration and exploitation, Design methods, New product development, Innovation, Semantic data processing

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