Designing in a university and start-up context: A study of the dependency between design requirements

R. A. Duran-Novoa, E. C.Y. Koh

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


The accurate management of requirements plays a critical role in product development, since missing any of them could lead to avoidable rework or even malfunctions [Chen and Zeng 2006], [Jarratt et al. 2011], [Hamraz et al. 2013]. This is especially dangerous in start-up organizations: untested market conditions, regulatory obstacles, and changing technology are examples of characteristics that make future system performance and success very challenging over the long term [Lessio et al. 2015]. In order to focus the limited resources in the correct requirements, it is necessary to understand how they affect the components and how they affect each other. The requirement-component dependencies have been studied widely [Koh et al. 2012, 2013, 2015], [Tang et al. 2015], [Tang and Yin 2016]; however, the research about requirement-requirement dependencies is almost inexistent, probably because they are more difficult to determine and quantify since (1) requirements are usually written in natural language, which leads to ambiguous or distorted understanding [Chen and Zeng 2006], and (2) requirements are volatile, having the tendency of changing over time [Nurmuliani et al. 2004]. Aiming to improve the understanding of dependencies between requirements, we contribute with two indices that indirectly quantifies them (Section 2), exploring the way that requirements affect each other and how to deal with this in a dynamic context, topic not treated (to our knowledge) in the literature. These indices were applied in a study case within a start-up context (Section 3), to later analyse the results and discuss its usefulness (Section 4). Conclusions and future work directions are presented at the end of the paper (Section 5)
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016
Externally publishedYes
EventProceedings of International Design Conference, DESIGN -
Duration: 1 Jan 2016 → …


ConferenceProceedings of International Design Conference, DESIGN
Period1/1/16 → …

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to thank the members of the Design-Centric Programme and the University Scholars Programme at the National University of Singapore for their valuable support. This research is funded by the EDIC Seed Fund (R-261-503-003-133), National University of Singapore.

Copyright 2016 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Software
  • Modelling and Simulation


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