The outcome of product development projects depends on a multitude of different influencing factors. Some of these factors are dominant over others. These Dominant Success Factors not only influence the outcome of product development projects significantly, but also influence other Success Factors to change, which is why they need to be given first and foremost attention by engineering management.

This paper illustrates the framework of a comprehensive Empirical Engineering Design Research study, which allowed for the identification of Dominant Success Factors, by applying it to 44 gas turbine component development projects in the industry. The collected data was analyzed using statistical methods, which provided information about the reliability of the results. Four Dominant Success Factors were identified which distinguished successful from less successful development projects: Priority of Project; Experience and Skills of Project Lead; Ratio of new Technology and Technical Complexity of Project; Awareness of Lessons Learned and State of the Art Technology Knowledge.

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