Methodological advancements of cross-cultural user-centred product development [Elektronische Ressource] / von Björn-Michael Braun

Methodological advancements of cross-cultural user-centred product development [Elektronische Ressource] / von Björn-Michael Braun

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DISSERTATION Methodological Advancements of Cross-Cultural User-Centred Product Development vom Fachbereich Maschinenwesen und Verfahrenstechnik der Technischen Universität Kaiserslautern zur Verleihung des akademischen Grades Doktor-Ingenieur (Dr.-Ing.) genehmigte Dissertation von Herrn Diplom-Wirtschaftsingenieur Björn-Michael Braun aus Bad Kreuznach Tag der mündlichen Prüfung: 19.06.2009 Dekan: Prof. Dr.-Ing. Siegfried Ripperger Prüfungskommission: Vorsitzender: Prof. Dr.-Ing. Paul L. Geiß 1. Berichterstatter: Jun.-Prof. Dr.-Ing. Kerstin Röse 2. Berichterstatter: Prof. Kun-Pyo Lee, PhD Preface I wrote this dissertation during my time as a PhD-student at the workgroup for User-Centred Product Development (USE) at the University of Kaiserslautern from 2006 to 2008. During this time I was supported through PhD-scholarships from the state of Rhineland-Palestine as well as the German Academic Exchange Service for which I am thankful. This work was inspired by JP Dr. Kerstin Röse of USE. I thank her for that and her support during the course of my research. Also, I owe Professor Kun-Pyo Lee of the Department of Industrial Design at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) a great debt of gratitude. The support he provided during my stay at KAIST and the efforts he undertook as a member of my PhD-commission were extraordinary. Thank you very much. Professor Paul L.

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DISSERTATION
Methodological Advancements of Cross-
Cultural User-Centred Product
Development
vom Fachbereich Maschinenwesen und Verfahrenstechnik der
Technischen Universität Kaiserslautern zur Verleihung des
akademischen Grades Doktor-Ingenieur (Dr.-Ing.) genehmigte
Dissertation

von Herrn
Diplom-Wirtschaftsingenieur Björn-Michael Braun
aus Bad Kreuznach

Tag der mündlichen Prüfung: 19.06.2009



Dekan: Prof. Dr.-Ing. Siegfried Ripperger

Prüfungskommission:
Vorsitzender: Prof. Dr.-Ing. Paul L. Geiß
1. Berichterstatter: Jun.-Prof. Dr.-Ing. Kerstin Röse
2. Berichterstatter: Prof. Kun-Pyo Lee, PhD
Preface
I wrote this dissertation during my time as a PhD-student at the workgroup for User-Centred Product
Development (USE) at the University of Kaiserslautern from 2006 to 2008. During this time I was
supported through PhD-scholarships from the state of Rhineland-Palestine as well as the German
Academic Exchange Service for which I am thankful.
This work was inspired by JP Dr. Kerstin Röse of USE. I thank her for that and her support during the
course of my research. Also, I owe Professor Kun-Pyo Lee of the Department of Industrial Design at
the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) a great debt of gratitude. The
support he provided during my stay at KAIST and the efforts he undertook as a member of my PhD-
commission were extraordinary. Thank you very much. Professor Paul L. Geiß chaired this
commission and I am very grateful for that. He was a wise chairman.
During this research extensive data collecting took place in China and Korea. Professor Zengjie Liu of
the Sino-European Usability Center (SEUC) at Dalian Maritime University was an extremely supportive
host in China and without Professor Kun-Pyo Lee’s incredible help this research would never had
happened in Korea. I am deeply grateful for their support!
This research could only be conducted with the support of many local researchers who ran interviews,
focus-groups and other user-analysis methods in China and Korea in local language, documented
their observations and translated them into English. My utmost gratitude goes to each single one of
them. Especially to Jiang Hao for his tireless help in planning, conducting and managing all sessions
in China. I really want to thank the whole Chinese team, that is Fei Wang, Hailing Tian, Shijun Xue,
Weijie Liu, Guannan Zhang, and Ning Zhang, for the great work they did. From the Korean side I want
to point out Daeop Kim and Jungmi Park. Without their support this research would have never been
successful. The Korean team, that is Byungjoon Bok, Eunji Choi, Jaehwa Lee, Jieun Shim, Kiwon Lee,
Kyungjin Ki, Moonhwan Lee, Sinae Kim, Woosung Park, Dongsan Kim and Seonguk Son, did a
brilliant job and I am grateful to had the pleasure working with them.
In Germany, data collection was supported by several ambiguous and smart students. For their help I
am very thankful.
The colleagues of USE’s partner-chair at the Institute of Production Automation (pak) I want to thank for
the great times we spent together. Especially for their always open ears and their moral support I am
grateful.
Last but not least I want to thank my family and friends for always being there and supporting me in all
phases of my life. Without them I would not be where I am now.
Executive Summary
Product development with end-user integration is not an end in itself but a logical necessity due to
divergent types of knowledge of the user and the developer of a product. While the user is an expert in
regard to the product’s usage the developer is an expert in the product’s construction and functioning.
For the development of high-end products both types of expertises were a prerequisite at all times.
The efficient and throughout integration of the user’s perspective into existing product development
approaches is the core of user-centred product development. Activities that are the basic ingredient of
just any user-centred development approach can be roughly categorized into analysis, design and
evaluation activities. Research and practice prove the early integration of real end-users within those
activities to add significant and sustainable value to product innovation. The instrumental,
methodological and procedural impact of globalization tendencies, on modern user-centred product
development in particular, is the primary research focus of the field of cross-cultural user-centred
product development.
This research aims at the further advancement of the methodological foundations of cross-cultural
user centred product development approaches based on a stabile and profound theoretical basis.
Primary research objects are established user-analysis methodologies, which are mainly based on
Western concepts and theories, and their applicability in disparate cultural contexts of the Far East
(China and Korea in particular).
For facilitating the adaptation of abstract method characteristics to the situational context of method
application as foundation of cross-cultural methodological advancement, a model of method
localization was developed. In alignment with internationalization and localization activities within
product development processes, a framework for localizing user-centred methodologies was
developed. Equivalent to internationalization activities of real product development, the abstraction of
method traits from specific methodologies is a necessity in a first step. Methodological adaptation with
the primary objective of optimizing situational application of a methodology is to be done in a second
step – the step of method-localization.
This model of method localization and its underlying theories and principles were tested within an
extensive empirical study in Germany, China and Korea. Within this study the applicability of six
distinct user-centred product development methodologies, each with its very own profile of abstract
method traits, was tested with 248 participants in total. Results clearly back the basic hypothesis of
method-localization, i.e. that the application of a user-centred methodology rises and falls with the
alignment of its characteristic traits with the cross-cultural application context. Beyond, applicability-
influencing factors identified within this study could be proven to be valid indicators of adaptation-
necessities and –potentials of user-centred product development methodologies.

Content
Content
Erklärung ........................................................................................................................ vi
List of Abbreviations ..................................................................................................... vii
Zusammenfassung......................................................................................................... ix
Summary ....................................................................................................................... xiv
1 Introduction ....................................................................................................... 1
1.1 Motivation of this study ........................................................................................ 1
1.2 Terminology ......................................................................................................... 3
2 International User-centred Product Development ........................................... 5
2.1 The System: (International) User-centred Product Development ......................... 6
2.1.1 Human ................................................................................................... 7
2.1.2 Product .................................................................................................. 9
2.1.3 Context ................................................................................................ 10
2.2 Interrelations of System-Components ................................................................ 12
2.2.1 Human-Product .................................................................................... 12
2.2.2 Product-Context ................................................................................... 13
2.2.3 Context-Human .................................................................................... 15
2.3 Activities and Processes within this System ....................................................... 16
2.3.1 Processes ............................................................................................ 16
2.3.2 Activities .............................................................................................. 18
2.3.2.1 Analysis .................................................................................. 18
2.3.2.2 Design .................................................................................... 18
2.3.2.3 Evaluation .............................................................................. 19
2.4 The paradigm of early user integration in user-centred product development .... 19
2.4.1 Objectives of early user integration ...................................................... 19
2.4.2 Philosophies of user integration and methodological implications ........ 21
Methodological Advancements of x-cultural user-centred product development i Content
2.4.2.1 The user as inspirer ................................................................ 22
2.4.2.2 The user as informer .............................................................. 27
2.5 The international perspective ............................................................................. 33
2.5.1 Globalization, Internationalization and Localization .............................. 33
2.5.2 Approaches and Models of Localization ............................................... 34
2.5.3 Missing Fundamental Theories ............................................................ 36
2.6 Challenges of international user-centred product development .......................... 40
2.6.1 Participants’ Profile .............................................................................. 41
2.6.2 The User-Centred Development Process ............................................. 41
2.6.2.1 Issues addressed ................................................................... 41
2.6.2.2 Results ................................................................................... 42
2.6.3 Usability Methods ................................................................................. 46
2.6.3.1 Issues addressed ................................................................... 46
2.6.3.2 Results ................................................................................... 46
2.6.4 Implications .......................................................................................... 50
3 Purpose of this study ...................................................................................... 51
3.1 Defining the problem space ............................................................................... 51
3.2 Goals of this research ........................................................................................ 51
3.3 Approach ........................................................................................................... 52
4 A framework for analysing the applicability of user-centred
methodologies ................................................................................................. 53
4.1 Theoretical back-ground and clarification of terminology ................................... 53
4.2 Determining method applicability ....................................................................... 54
4.3 The activity system of user-centre methodology application .............................. 58
4.4 Implications for cross-cultural user-centred methodologies ................................ 62
4.4.1 Procedural implications ........................................................................ 63
4.4.2 Methodological implications ................................................................. 64
5 An approach towards method localization .................................................... 70
5.1 Method internationalization ................................................................................ 70
ii Methodological Advancements of x-cultural user-centred product development Content
5.2 Method localization ............................................................................................ 73
5.2.1 Theoretical Foundation ........................................................................ 73
5.2.2 Model of methodological localization .................................................... 77
5.2.3 Process of methodological localization ................................................. 79
6 Empirical verification of method localization ................................................ 82
6.1 Purpose ............................................................................................................. 82
6.2 Research Setup ................................................................................................. 82
6.2.1 General setup ...................................................................................... 83
6.2.2 Methods ............................................................................................... 84
6.2.3 Factors and Measures ......................................................................... 90
6.3 Research Questions .......................................................................................... 92
6.4 Data Analysis Approach .................................................................................... 93
6.5 Part I .................................................................................................................. 96
6.5.1 Variables and Measures ...................................................................... 96
6.5.2 Analysis ............................................................................................... 98
6.5.2.1 Cross-cultural perspective ...................................................... 98
6.5.2.2 Intra-cultural perspective ...................................................... 101
6.5.3 Results ............................................................................................... 104
6.6 Part II ............................................................................................................... 114
6.6.1 Variables and Measures .................................................................... 114
6.6.2 Analysis ............................................................................................. 116
6.6.2.1 General Analysis .................................................................. 116
6.6.2.1.1 Collected Data .................................................................. 116
6.6.2.1.2 Researcher Effects ........................................................... 120
6.6.2.2 Analysing Individual Variance ............................................... 121
6.6.2.2.1 Method, Culture and Individual Variance .......................... 122
6.6.2.2.2 Personal Disposition and Method ..................................... 123
6.6.2.2.2.1 Interview ........................................................................ 124
6.6.2.2.2.2 Puzzle Interview............................................................. 127
Methodological Advancements of x-cultural user-centred product development iii Content
6.6.2.2.2.3 Cultural Probe ................................................................ 130
6.6.2.2.2.4 Focus Group .................................................................. 131
6.6.2.2.2.5 Anecdote Circle ............................................................. 133
6.6.2.2.2.6 Inspiration Card Workshops ........................................... 135
6.6.2.2.3 Summary .......................................................................... 137
6.6.2.3 Analysing Cultural Variance ................................................. 138
6.6.2.3.1 Method, Culture and Cultural Efficacy ............................... 139
6.6.2.3.2 Relative Cultural Efficacy per Method ............................... 140
6.6.2.3.2.1 Interview ........................................................................ 141
6.6.2.3.2.2 Puzzle Interview............................................................. 142
6.6.2.3.2.3 Cultural Probe ................................................................ 144
6.6.2.3.2.4 Focus Group .................................................................. 145
6.6.2.3.2.5 Anecdote Circle ............................................................. 146
6.6.2.3.2.6 Inspiration Card Workshop ............................................ 148
6.6.2.3.3 Summary .......................................................................... 150
6.6.2.4 Analysing Methodological Variance ...................................... 151
6.6.2.4.1 Method, Culture and Methodological Efficacy ................... 151
6.6.2.4.2 Relative Methodological Efficacy per Culture .................... 153
6.6.2.4.2.1 China ............................................................................. 153
6.6.2.4.2.2 Korea ............................................................................. 156
6.6.2.4.2.3 Germany ........................................................................ 158
6.6.2.4.3 Summary .......................................................................... 160
6.6.2.5 Analysing General Variance ................................................. 163
6.6.2.6 Predicting and analysing facilitators and obstacles ............... 164
6.6.2.6.1 China ................................................................................ 165
6.6.2.6.1.1 Predicting efficacy .......................................................... 165
6.6.2.6.1.2 Analysing efficacy .......................................................... 165
6.6.2.6.2 Korea ................................................................................ 167
6.6.2.6.2.1 Predicting efficacy .......................................................... 167
6.6.2.6.2.2 Analysing efficacy .......................................................... 168
iv Methodological Advancements of x-cultural user-centred product development