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This paper is an introduction to social judgment theory for productivity researchers and managers. It offers a useful theoretical and methodological basis for formulating and analyzing policies for value engineering/value analysis. Assignment of value to a product, process, or service is matter of an individual exercising his or her own judgment, which may vary from person to person. Subjectivity plays an important role in the assessment of value. Social judgment theory offers a theoretical framework that will prove useful to researchers in the study of the value engineering/value analysis process. The paper describes a computerized procedure for identification, measurement, and reporting of judgmental sources of value assessment. This information proves invaluable in the development and implementation of management policies for new product, process, or service development and for productivity improvements. A case study is provided as an example of how the procedure described here can be used for both research and practical application purposes. The results of the case study demonstrate that analyses of judgments and interactive computer graphics offer useful tools that serve as policy aids for the managers assessing value.
Date of Publication: Aug. 1987