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Companies experience increasing pressure to reduce time to market while providing responsiveness to market. This forces companies to rethink their processes and organization in particular in product development. But often companies experience that process reengineering, organizational restructuring or high-end tools do not provide the expected results. This paper addresses why existing approaches have failed to release the full improvement potential. To create excellence within product development, the authors propose an integrated, collaborative environment as a common platform. This platform is called Engineering Design Center (EDC) and has been originated in the space industry by NASA's JPL. In the beginning used for conceptual design of spacecraft, EDCs are now transferred into other domains like aircraft or the automotive industry, where they find different applications. This paper describes the basic elements of an EDC and a generic implementation process. Implementation experiences from various industries are discussed and success factors are derived. As an outlook an application perspective for the development of services is described.
Date of Conference: 2002