The design research pyramid: a three layer framework

Wenjuan Wang, Alexander Duffy

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
129 Downloads (Pure)


To support knowledge-based design development, considerable research has been conducted from various perspectives at different levels. The research on knowledge-based design support systems, generic design artefact and design process modelling, and the inherent quality of design knowledge itself are some examples of these perspectives. The structure underneath the research is not a disparate one but ordered. This paper provides an overview of some ontologies of design knowledge and a layered research framework of knowledge-based engineering design support. Three layers of research are clarified in this pattern: knowledge ontology, design knowledge model, and application. Specifically, the paper highlights ontologies of design knowledge by giving a set of classifications of design knowledge from different points of view. Within the discussion of design knowledge content ontology, two topologies, i.e., teleology and evolutionary, are identified.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 28 Aug 2007
Event16th International Conference on Engineering Design - Paris, France
Duration: 28 Aug 200731 Aug 2007


Conference16th International Conference on Engineering Design
Abbreviated titleICED07
CityParis, France


  • research framework
  • knowledge-based design
  • design knowledge


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