The PSI matrix - A framework and a theory of design

Yoram Reich*, Eswaran Subrahmanian

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Real life design situations often involve addressing complex multidisciplinary problems that are hard to formulate and solve, attempted by a diverse group of people, working in different organizations with different cultures, collaborating through a variety of contracts. Many design efforts fail due to incomplete understanding of design contexts. Can we create a framework that will help us unpack this complexity into a structure that allows us to explain, predict, and control failures and improve such situations to help organizations design better? We present a framework, called the PSI matrix that was developed by combining knowledge from diverse disciplines; following numerous case studies with industry to address the above-mentioned challenge. We describe the framework and its evolution from an earlier version, demonstrate its applicability to several diverse design examples, and mention several other cases on which it was tested. We have found it to be robust in supporting its objectives and continue to develop it to improve its added value to design by conducting multi-case, transdisciplinary, multicontext study with numerous partners.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-20
Number of pages10
JournalProceedings of the International Conference on Engineering Design, ICED
Issue numberDS87-7
StatePublished - 2017
Event21st International Conference on Engineering Design, ICED 2017 - Vancouver, Canada
Duration: 21 Aug 201725 Aug 2017


  • Design management
  • Design theory
  • Framework of Design
  • Organisation of product development


Dive into the research topics of 'The PSI matrix - A framework and a theory of design'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this