A theory of maturity

Authors Darek Ceglarek , Erik Puik
Published in Proceedings
Publication date 24 September 2014
Research groups Microsystems Technology
Type Lecture


From the article: The ‘Axiomatic Design Methodology’ uses ‘Axioms’ that cannot be proven nor derived from physical phenomena. The axioms serve as guidelines for the design process of products and systems. The latest contribution was the addition of the ‘Complexity Axiom’ in 1999. However, the underlying theory of complexity did not get much traction by designers and their managers yet. It emphasises difficulties in the design, not primarily focussing on solutions. The ‘Theory of Complexity’ is converted to a ‘Theory of Maturity’ in this paper. It is supported with a graphical way to plot maturity as it develops. It visualises the results in a way that can be understood by all entities in a company, engineers, managers, and executives. Understanding the maturity of a system enables selection of the right measures to control it. Visualisation enables communication between the interacting parties. If successful development trajectories are understood, eventually from earlier experience, even better corrective actions can be applied. The method appears an affirmative way to graphically represent progression in design, thus presenting advances in a positive context. Though positively presented, it is not the case that the method hides problems; presumed and legitimate project progression can be quite different, which challenges the designer to understand the process. In this way, the method sends out a continuous warning to stay critical on design choices made.


  • Erik Puik
    Erik Puik
    • Professor
    • Research groups: Microsystems Technology

Language English
Published in Proceedings
Key words Axiomatic Design, Information, Complexity, Independence, Maturity

Microsystems Technology