Key characteristics management in product lifecycle management: a survey of methodologies and practices

L Y Zheng, Christopher A McMahon, L Li, Lian Ding, J Jamshidi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Citations (SciVal)


Key characteristics (KCs) play a significant role in product lifecycle management (PLM) and in collaborative and global product development. Over the last decade, KCs methodologies and tools have been studied and practiced in several domains of the product lifecycle, and many world-class companies have introduced KCs considerations into their product development practices. However, there has been no systematic survey of KCs techniques, methodologies, and practices in this respect. This paper aims to give a comprehensive survey of KCs methodologies, and practices from the perspective of enterprise integration and PLM. The paper firstly presents a holistic framework of KCs methodologies and practices through the product lifecycle, and summarizes the fundamentals of KCs including their definition and classification, KC flowdown, and the identification and selection of KCs. A review of the KCs methods and practices in the product lifecycle is then presented, particularly in engineering design, manufacturing planning, production and testing as well as information and knowledge management respectively. Finally, the problems and challenges for future research on KCs techniques are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)989-1008
Number of pages20
JournalProceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part B: Journal of Engineering Manufacture
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2008


  • product lifecycle management
  • variation management
  • dimensional management
  • information and knowledge management
  • product development
  • quality management
  • key characteristics


Dive into the research topics of 'Key characteristics management in product lifecycle management: a survey of methodologies and practices'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this