Influence of sketch types on distributed design team work

Mariella Schembri, Philip Farrugia, Andrew J. Wodehouse, Hilary Grierson, Ahmed Kovacevic

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
106 Downloads (Pure)


Product development is a collaborative activity more often than ever carried out by distributed design teams. It is critical to determine how sketches are used in such environments in order to improve the design process. Sketches produced by students participating in a collaborative design project of three European Universities are classified according to the intention of the designer when producing a sketch, the level of detail shown in the sketch and the phase when the sketch was produced. The adapted classification system used in this paper helps to analyse type of sketches with most variety of ideas. Furthermore, this paper reviews which type of sketches offers the most potential to be further developed. Results show that persuasive sketches offer the broadest range of ideas since they are produced as a combination of ideas from brainstorming sessions. Shared sketches help to achieve consensus in decision-making since the sketches are most likely to be produced by the entire group rather than individually.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-118
Number of pages20
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 9 Jul 2015


  • communication tools
  • design collaboration
  • engineering design process
  • sketch taxonomy


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