Conference paper
Lean production has responded to low-level customisation, but for residential construction, earlier customer input is required. The development of the 'platform approach' to industrialised house building has enabled high-level mass-customisation. Focus has been applied to 'hard' improvements regarding production efficiency, with less emphasis on 'soft' values associated with the intangible nature of design. Platform-thinking has demonstrated that new possibilities are emerging which may enable producers of industrialised housing to effectively deliver design-value to end-users. This paper contributes to the developing platform approach, by investigating design-value for industrialised house building from an architectural perspective. Through an understanding of the product platform approach developed within the Swedish context, selected case-studies from outside construction demonstrate the possibilities that the platform-thinking concept holds, to address the research question; how can design-value be achieved in industrialised house building? Much design-value originates from interaction between designer and user, which has been overlooked in the development of the platform approach, yet by considering its conceptual basis of platform-thinking, new possibilities emerge for the delivery of design-value in product and process. The findings will enhance the development of platforms for industrialised house building.
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