A Research Roadmap Toward a Holistic and Structured Top-Down Concept Selection Methodology


In the field of human cognition, thinking consists of problem-solving and decision-making. In cognitive thinking, top-down processing is an approach used by experts that enables them to solve problems and make decisions efficiently. This paper attempts to apply cognitive top-down thinking process to the concept evaluation of systems and their components. In the top-down concept evaluation approach, engineers first evaluate system concepts. Once a system concept is selected, engineers then identify system components (modules) that they can design independently for the chosen system concept. Engineers generate concepts for system modules and select one concept for each module. The objective of this paper is first to identify characteristics needed for a holistic and structured top-down concept evaluation methodology for a system and its components, and second to propose a research roadmap for establishing the proposed framework. Copyright © 2008 by ASME.

Meeting Name

2008 ASME International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, IMECE 2008


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Cognition; Systems Thinking; Top-Down Processing

Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


File Type





© 2009 American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Jan 2009