Collaboration space division in collaborative product development based on a genetic algorithm


School of Mechatronic Engineering, Xi’an Technological University, No. 2, Middle Xuefu Road, Xi’an, 710021, Shaanxi Province, China


The advance in the global environment, rapidly changing markets, and information technology has created a new stage for design. In such an environment, one strategy for success is the Collaborative Product Development (CPD). Organizing people effectively is the goal of Collaborative Product Development, and it solves the problem with certain foreseeability. The development group activities are influenced not only by the methods and decisions available, but also by correlation among personnel. Grouping the personnel according to their correlation intensity is defined as collaboration space division (CSD). Upon establishment of a correlation matrix (CM) of personnel and an analysis of the collaboration space, the genetic algorithm (GA) and minimum description length (MDL) principle may be used as tools in optimizing collaboration space. The MDL principle is used in setting up an object function, and the GA is used as a methodology. The algorithm encodes spatial information as a chromosome in binary. After repetitious crossover, mutation, selection and multiplication, a robust chromosome is found, which can be decoded into an optimal collaboration space. This new method can calculate the members in sub-spaces and individual groupings within the staff. Furthermore, the intersection of sub-spaces and public persons belonging to all sub-spaces can be determined simultaneously.