Several tools and methods drawn from research in design and manufacturing have been successfully transplanted into industry. This paper describes a survey conducted of practicing designers and engineers in fields ranging from product development to aerospace to better understand the methodologies and metrics they employ. Preliminary results suggest that respondents found methodologies such as need finding, storyboarding, and brainstorming useful, but were less familiar with approaches such as systematic design, axiomatic design, or TRIZ. There was wide variation in what respondents felt were appropriate design outcome measures, but positive customer feedback in particular was deemed important in evaluating project performance. Finally, a broad range of design tools was cited as useful by respondents, but computer aided drawing applications in particular were rated highly. It is hoped that this survey can be of value in formulating future research goals in design theory and tool development.

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