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NSF Sponsored Engineering Design and Systems Engineering Foundations Workshop (November 14-17, 2015)

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This workshop brings together educators and researchers in the fields of Engineering Design and Systems Engineering to assess the state of the art in these fields, identify promising directions for future research, exploit the synergies between the two fields, and strengthen the design and innovation capabilities of practitioners. Additionally, current NSF grantees from both ESD and SYS programs (Engineering and Systems Design; Systems Science) will be able to present posters explaining their work and get feedback from their colleagues and the program director. Participants will identify and discuss past contributions that have had a strong impact on education and practice and discuss their domains of applicability, their limitations, and what needs to be done to strengthen their future potential and impact.

The main objective of the workshop is to enable the engineering design and systems engineering communities to exchange ideas and find synergies. The workshop will bring together about 150 researchers and divide them in small groups of ten to discuss three specific topics. First, workshop participants will focus on method validation and research methodology. Many design and systems engineering methods, approaches and tools have been proposed in the last forty years. There is a need to take stock, critique, agree on the potentials and limitations of these methods, and define evidence-based approaches to further improve them. A second workshop topic is to determine future research directions and to establish a framework in which these future contributions can be organized. The focus will be on directions that can most affect the ability of engineering and systems designers to innovate and to deal with the increased complexity of products and systems. Third, the education of engineers and of practitioners will be discussed to identify best practices, the right mix between experiential education and lectures, and the critical topics that will provide the breadth and depth required to move the fields forward at the various educational levels.



  • ESD/SYS
  • NSF
  • CEDAR