Strategic Design of Engineering Education for the Flat World

Dirk Schaefer, Jitesh H. Panchal, Seung-Kyum Choi, Farrokh Mistee

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31 Citations (SciVal)
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We believe that two critical success factors for an engineer in the flat world are an ability to adapt
to changes and to be able to work at the interface of different disciplines. Instead of educating
traditional domain-specific and analysis-orientated engineers, we believe that the focus should be on
educating and graduating strategic engineers who can realize complex systems for changing
markets in a collaborative, globally distributed environment. We identify three key drivers that
we believe are foundational to future engineering design education programs. These drivers are a)
emphasis on strategic engineering, b) mass customization of courses, c) utilization of IT-enabled
environments for distributed education. Strategic engineering is a field that relates to the design and
creation of complex systems that are adaptable to changes. Mass customization of courses refers to
adapting the course material to educational goals and learning styles of different students. IT
enabled environments bring distributed students and instructors closer in the form of a virtual
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)274-282
JournalInternational Journal of Engineering Education
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2008


  • strategic engineers
  • mass customization of education
  • distributed education
  • flat world
  • product ceation


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