Knowledge and ability needed
Source: Interdisciplinary Science Reviews, Volume 21, Number 4, December 1996 , pp. 292-303(12)
Publisher: Maney Publishing
Abstract:A design engineer is both a problem solver for complex processes and configurator of utility products. This development phase is generally characterised by iterative approaches and procedures in which the various problems and applications in machine design demand interdisciplinary cooperation among diverse specialists. Technical knowledge, familiarity with the various applicable methodologies, and a general resourcefulness are the particular requirements in such human–science–environment interactions. To this end, the knowledge of basic principles must be transformed into the ability to practically apply them, which must also be trained as part of the curriculum. This ability depends on the individual's skill and experience, his or her success being determined by his or her personal style and chosen approach. The design methodology supports the newcomer and the experienced engineer alike by giving them guiding help, but is also the guiding line for work in an interdisciplinary team. 'Simultaneous engineering' and similar schemes require new forms of organisation under which individualists must work for the team. Successful cooperation depends on the knowledge and ability of the individuals as well as on the leadership and talent of the team leaders and the project manager. This environment has its advantages and disadvantages, which are discussed. Finally, these organisational structures and the trend towards a global economy pose additional demands on the abilities and conduct of designers.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: 1: Institute of Machine Elements and Engineering Design, Technical University Darmstadt, Germany 2: Department of Mechanical Engineering Design, Otto-von-Guericke University, Magdeburg, Germany
Publication date: December 1996