Value Analysis as a Decision Support Tool in Cruise Ship Design

Pietro Romano, Marco Formentini, Camillo Bandera, Marco Tomasella

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16 Citations (SciVal)


In the cruise ship industry product development and production activities are really complex and must follow strict rules imposed by naval registries. Designers are frequently required to choose among several alternative solutions (e.g., materials, components, layouts, etc.). Because of time constraints, as a matter of fact, design decisions are made fast and in a reactive way, according to the particular case, without considering decisions made in the past and without using specific decision support tools. The final choice is often left to a single designer's experience, whose selection criteria are unknown and not formalised. As a consequence there is no shared knowledge justifying the reason why a design solution has been chosen and whether it is the best one. We developed and implemented in Fincantieri S.p.A. – a leading company in the cruise ship industry – an original decision support tool, based on value analysis, designers can use to document and formalise their choices. Value analysis is a well known structured method to increase product value and/or cut costs, thus supporting the selection of the most valuable solution by means of objective parameters. We demonstrate that the proposed tool can also facilitate reuse of the available knowledge base on decisional criteria, increase interactions between people (design staff, buyers, shipyard personnel, etc.) involved in different stages of different value analysis projects, and reduce decision time.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6939-6958
JournalInternational Journal of Production Research
Issue number23
Early online date15 Jan 2010
Publication statusPublished - 2010


  • value analysis
  • decision making
  • shipbuilding
  • product development


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