Understanding the Waste Net: A Method for Waste Elimination Prioritization in Product Development

Marcus V.P. Pessôa*, Warren Seering, Eric Rebentisch, Christoph Bauch

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


This paper describes a method for prioritization of waste reduction efforts during a Product Development System (PDS) improvement project. Waste refers to activities that absorb resources and increase cost without adding value. Although waste identification and elimination along the value chain has proven useful to PDS improvement, previous work focuses on the waste identification, rather than on its prioritization. This work aims to fill this gap by proposing a "waste coupling" based method to define this sequencing. The method uses a waste set composed of 10 waste types specified into 28 subtypes. The approach is illustrated by an example of possible causal dependencies among subtypes in which both direct and indirect (reinforcement) waste relations are included. This paper's main contributions are: (1) defining a PD specific waste set covering all the PDS elements; (2) describing a procedure to calculate the impact of coupling between wastes through indirect relations; and (3) presenting a heuristic to prioritize from highly coupled waste subsets.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGlobal Perspective for Competitive Enterprise, Economy and Ecology
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 16th ISPE International Conference on Concurrent Engineering
EditorsShuo-Yan Chou, Amy Trappey, Jerzy Pokojski, Shana Smith
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-84882-762-2
ISBN (Print)978-1-84882-761-5
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes
Event16th ISPE International Conference on Concurrent Engineering, CE 2009 - Taipei, Taiwan
Duration: 20 Jul 200924 Jul 2009
Conference number: 16

Publication series

NameAdvanced Concurrent Engineering


Conference16th ISPE International Conference on Concurrent Engineering, CE 2009
Abbreviated titleCE 2009


  • Lean product development
  • Product development process
  • Product development process improvement
  • Product development system
  • Waste reduction


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