Design education and research intertwined

Elmer Van Grondelle, Jacobs Jan, Cornelis Joachim Petrus Maria de Bont, Rene Van Egmond

Research output: Chapter in book / Conference proceedingConference article published in proceeding or bookAcademic researchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The number of means of the automotive stylist to express a unique brand identity through automotive form, one of the objectives of styling, have diminished. Platforms and technologies, formerly brand owned and specific to its identity and styling, have to be shared among the many, as do market segments and geographical domains. This increases the responsibility of, and the pressure on, styling. In order to substantially contribute to strategy, styling must reposition itself in the value chain. A 'Strategic Automotive' course has been designed as part of Delft's Advanced Automotive Specialization, to educate the application of management models that aid and facilitate styling, embedded in a research program on automotive form. These management models aim to offer a common frame of reference between styling and other disciplines. Generally, in existing research on automotive form, cars are assessed as a whole, with little to no identified relationship between automotive form and the previously identified, related, engineering and technology means. The Automotive Form Hierarchy model is aimed to provide that structure and the aforementioned common frame of reference. This paper describes how management models have been applied in a master course which, in return, serves as a research environment for that development. The challenge lies in integrating a wide range of topics and student profiles, spreading across disciplines as well as cultures. In conclusion, preliminary findings indicate value of the model, and offers direction for further research. Both the model and the course have been redesigned as a result.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDS 69: Proceedings of E and PDE 2011, the 13th International Conference on Engineering and Product Design Education
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2011
Externally publishedYes
Event13th International Conference on Engineering and Product Design Education, E and PDE 2011 - London, United Kingdom
Duration: 8 Sep 20119 Sep 2011


Conference13th International Conference on Engineering and Product Design Education, E and PDE 2011
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


  • Automotive styling
  • Design education
  • Strategic management
  • Tacit knowledge

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Education

Cite this