The design process: Properties, paradigms, and structure

Dan Braha, Oded Maimon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this paper, we examine the logic and methodology of engineering design from the perspective of the philosophy of science. The fundamental characteristics of design problems and design processes are discussed and analyzed. These characteristics establish the framework within which different design paradigms are examined. Following the discussions on descriptive properties of design, and the prescriptive role of design paradigms, we advocate the plausible hypothesis that there is a direct resemblance between the structure of design processes and the problem solving of scientific communities. The scientific community metaphor has been useful in guiding the development of general purpose highly effective design process meta-tools [73], [125].

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)146-166
Number of pages21
JournalIEEE Transactions on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics Part A:Systems and Humans
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1997

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