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Katja Holtta-Otto

Associate Professor

Research Areas:
Design Science
Biography

I believe designers can design anything if they are given the right tools to do so. I am especially interested in enabling the designers to make the world better by design whether is was designing a device that eliminated human error during use, a device that can be used easier by all from an old man with arthritis trying to do his daily routines, or a product that will bring clean water to a rural village in a developing country.

My approach is to develop these tools to equip the designer to answer any problem. I have developed the foundation for empathic experience based design theory to increase the innovativenss and improve the user interaction characteristics of products. I work closely with psychologist and sociologists to better understand the human as a user of products. My approach to design research is rigorous data based, human centered and interdisciplinary.

In addition, I also work in Systems Engineering. Specifically in the areas of modularity, system decomposition and design for system integration.

Education
  • PhD Mechanical Engineering, Product Development, Helsinki University of Technology, 2005
  • MS Mechanical Engineering, Helsinki University of Technology, 2000
Research Interests
  • Innovation and creativity
  • Universal design
  • Empathic Experience Design
  • Design for distracted use
  • Innovation and Risk in product development
  • Differences in product development methods for New Ventures and more mature and larger companies
  • User centered design
  • Systems Engineering and system architecture
Research Projects (previous & on-going
  • Investigating the Innovation Capabilities of Undergraduate Students
  • Empathic Experience Design for Universal Design
    •  Leveraged Freedom Chair re-development (a survey for current mobility users)
  • Measuring Innovation and Risk in Engineering Design
  • User Centered approach to future smart homes and products
Awards and Achievements
  • NSF CAREER Award 2012
  • Best Paper Award: ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition (Design in Engineering Education Division) “An Experimental Investigation of the Innovation Capabilities of Engineering Students”, 2010
  • Best Paper Award: ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition (Mechanical Engineering Division) “Extreme Experience Interviews for Innovative Designs: Classroom Assessment of a New Needs-Gathering Method”, 2010
  • Best Paper Award: ASME 21st International Conference on Design Theory and Methodology (DTM), “The Characteristics of Innovative, Mechanical Products”, 2009
  • Best Paper Award: ASME 18th International Conference on Design Theory and Methodology (DTM), “Identifying Customer Needs – Disabled Persons as Lead Users”, 2006
  • UMass Dartmouth Outstanding Women Award 2012
Selected Publications
Peer Reviewed Journal Articles
  • Hölttä-Otto, K. Chiriac N., Suh, E.S. and Lysy, D., 2012, Comparative analysis of coupling modularity metrics. Journal of Engineering Design Vol 23, Issue 10-11, 2012
  • Genco, N., Hölttä-Otto, K., and Seepersad, C.C., 2012 “An Experimental Investigation of the Innovation Capabilities of Undergraduate Engineering Students” Journal of Engineering Education, January 2012
  • Ranawat, A., Tuteja, S., Hölttä-Otto, K., 2012 “Contribution of visual design elements to the perceived product family look”Journal of Design Research, Vol. 10, No. 3
  • Chiriac, N., Hölttä-Otto, K., Suh, E. Lysy, D. 2011, Level of Modularity and different levels of system granularity, ASME Journal of Mechanical Design, Vol 133, October 2011, 101007.
    [pdf]
  • Saunders, M. N., Seepersad, C. C. and Hölttä-Otto, K., 2011, The Characteristics of Innovative, Mechanical Products, ASME Journal of Mechanical Design, Vol 133, Issue 2, 021009. [pdf]
  • Hölttä-Otto, K. Tang, V., & Otto, K., 2008, Analyzing module commonality for platform design using dendrograms. Research in Engineering Design, Vol. 19, No. 2, pp. 127-141. [pdf]
  • Salonen, M. Hölttä-Otto, K. Otto, K., 2008, Affecting product reliability and lifecycle costs with early design phase product architecture decisions. International Journal of Product Development. 5:1-2, pp. 109-124.
  • Hölttä-Otto, K. & de Weck, O., 2007, Degree of modularity in engineering systems and products with technical and business constraints. Concurrent Engineering: Research and Application. June, Volume 15, No. 2.
  • Otto, K. & Hölttä-Otto, K., 2007, A multi-criteria assessment tool for screening preliminary product platform concepts.Journal of Intelligent Manufacturing.  Volume 18, Number 1 February.
  • Hölttä-Otto, K. & Magee, C., 2006, Estimating factors affecting project task size in product development – an empirical study. IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management, Vol 53, No 1. February.
  • Hölttä, K. & Otto, K., 2005, Incorporating design effort complexity measures in product architectural Design and Assessment. Design Studies. Vol 26, Issue 5, Pp. 445-564. September. [pdf]
Peer Reviewed Conference Articles
  • Otto, K., Hölttä-Otto, K. & Simpson, T., 2013, Linking 10 years or modular design research: Alternative methods and tool chain sequences to support platform design, ASME IDETC Design Automation Conference, Portland OR, 2013. [pdf]
  • Hölttä-Otto, K., Otto, K., & Luo, J., 2013, Innovation differences between new venture startups and incumbent firms,International Conference on Engineering Design ICED’13. Seoul, S. Korea.
  • Kuhr, R., Otto, K., Sosa, R., Raghunath, N., Hölttä-Otto, K., & Wood, K., 2013, Design with the Developing World: A Model of Interactions, International Conference on Engineering Design ICED’13. Seoul, S. Korea.
  • Borjesson, F. and Hölttä-Otto, K., 2012, Improved clustering Algorithm for Design Structure Matrix. ASME IDETC Design Automation Conference, Chicago, 2012. [pdf]
  • Holtta-Otto, K., Tang, V. & Otto, K., 2012, Module Definition for Product-Service Systems. ASME IDETC Design for Manufacturing and the Life Cycle Conference (DFMLC), Chicago, 2012. [pdf]
  • Blair, B. and Hölttä-Otto, K., 2012, Contribution of a group to the initial idea in progressive idea generation, ASME IDETC Design Theory and Methodology Conference, Chicago. [pdf]
  • Chiriac, N., Hölttä-Otto, K., Suh, E. & Lysy, D., 2011, Three approaches to complex system decomposition, Proceedings of the 13th International Dependency and Structure Modelling Conference, DSM’11, Cambridge, MA, September 14 – 15, 2011. [pdf]
  • Genco, N., Johnson, D., Hölttä-Otto, K., & Seepersad, C.C., 2011, Study of effectiveness of Empathic Experience Design creativity technique, Proceedings of the ASME Design Engineering Technical Conference, Washington, DC, August 27-31, 2011. [pdf]
  • Chiriac, N., Hölttä-Otto, K., Suh, E. & Lysy, D., 2011 Level of modularity at different levels of system granularity, Proceedings of the ASME Design Engineering Technical Conference, Washington, DC, August 27-31, 2011.
  • Kershaw, T. C., Hölttä-Otto, K., & Lee, Y. S. 2011 The Effect of Prototyping and Critical Feedback on Fixation in Engineering Design. Cog Sci Conference, Boston, MA.
  • Genco, N., Hölttä-Otto, K., and Seepersad, C.C., 2011, Factors that influence the creativity of engineering students. ASEE 2011, Vancouver, BC.
  • Otto, K. and Hölttä-Otto, K., 2010, “Incorporating field effects in modular architecture methods”, ASME IDETC Design Theory and Methodology Conference, Montreal, Canada. [pdf]
  • Srivathsavai, R. Genco, N., Hölttä-Otto, K., and Seepersad, C.C., 2010, “Study of Existing Metrics Used in Measurement of Ideation Effectiveness”,  ASME IDETC Design Theory and Methodology Conference, Montreal, Canada. [pdf]
  • Genco, N., Hölttä-Otto, K., and Seepersad, C.C., 2010, “An Experimental Investigation of the Innovation Capabilities of Engineering Students” ASEE 2010, Louisville, KY. BEST PAPER AWARD
  • Green, M., Seepersad, C.C. and Hölttä-Otto, K. 2010, “Extreme Experience Interviews for Innovative Designs: Classroom Assessment of a New Needs-Gathering Method,” ASEE Annual Conference and Exposition, Louisville, KY. BEST PAPER AWARD
  • Hölttä-Otto, K. Saunders, M. and Seepersad C. C., 2010, “The Characteristics of Innovative, Medical Products,” ASME Design of Medical Devices Conference DMD, Minneapolis, MN. [pdf]
  • Saunders, M. N., Seepersad, C. C. and Hölttä-Otto, K. 2009, “The Characteristics of Innovative, Mechanical Products,”ASME IDETC Design Theory and Methodology Conference, San Diego, CA, BEST PAPER AWARD.
  • Ranawat, A. and K. Hölttä-Otto, 2009, “Four Dimensions of Design Similarity,” ASME IDETC Design Theory and Methodology Conference, San Diego, CA.
  • Hölttä-Otto, K. & de Weck, O., 2007, Metrics for Assessing Coupling Density and Modularity in Complex Products and Systems. ASME IDETC Design Theory and Methodology ConferenceDesign Theory and Methodology (DTM). Las Vegas. [pdf]
  • Celona, T., Embry-Pelrine, C. & Hölttä-Otto, K., 2007, Are modular products larger than integral products? International conference on engineering design, ICED07. Paris.
  • Hölttä-Otto, K., Helminen, P., Ekman, K. & Roemer, T., 2007, A pilot program teaching dispersed product development in collaboration with an international university. ASEE’07. Honolulu, HI.
  • Hannukainen, P. & Hölttä-Otto, K., 2006, Identifying customer needs – disabled persons and lead users. ASME design engineering technical conferences DETC. Design Theory and Methodology (DTM). Philadelphia. BEST PAPER AWARD. [pdf]
  • Simpson, T.W. Marion, T. de Weck, O. Hölttä-Otto, K. Kokkolaras, M. and Shooter, S. B., 2006,“Platform-Based Design and Development: Current Trends and Needs in Industry” ASME design engineering technical conferences DETC. Philadelphia.
  • Hölttä-Otto, K., 2005, Analyzing module commonality for platform design in functional and physical domain. ASME design engineering technical conferences DETC. Long Beach. [pdf]
  • Hölttä, K., Suh, E. S., and de Weck, O., 2005, Tradeoff between modularity and performance for engineered systems and products. International conference on engineering design, ICED05. Melbourne.
  • Otto, K. & Hölttä, K., 2004, A multi-criteria framework for screening preliminary product platform concepts. ASME design engineering technical conferences DETC. Salt Lake City. [pdf]
  • Hölttä, K., 2004, Comparative analysis of product modularization methods. NordDesign. Tampere.
  • Hölttä, K. & Salonen, M., 2003, Comparing three different modularity methods. ASME design engineering technical conferences DETC. Chicago. [pdf]
  • Hölttä, K. & Otto, K., 2003, Incorporating design complexity measures in architectural assessment. ASME design engineering technical conferences DETC. Chicago.
  • Hölttä, K., Tang, V., & Seering, W., 2003, Modularizing product architectures using dendrograms. International conference on engineering design, ICED03. Stockholm.

Book Chapters

  • Hölttä-Otto, K. Otto, K., and Simpson, T. W., 2013, Defining Modules for Platforms: An Overview of the Architecting Process. In: Advances in Product Family and Product Platform Design – Methods & Applications, Simpson, T.W.; Jiao, J.; Siddique, Z.; Hölttä-Otto, K. (Eds.), 2013, XIV, 748 p. Springer.
  • Hölttä-Otto, K. Chiriac, N., Lysy, D. and Suh, E. S., 2013, Architectural Decomposition – the role of granularity and decomposition viewpoint. In: Advances in Product Family and Product Platform Design – Methods & Applications, Simpson, T.W.; Jiao, J.; Siddique, Z.; Hölttä-Otto, K. (Eds.), 2013, XIV, 748 p. Springer.
  • Hölttä-Otto K. and Otto, K., 2006, Platform Concept Evaluation. In: Product platform and product family design – Methods and Applications. Simpson, T., Siddique, Z., and Jiao, J. (Eds.). Springer.

Positions Open

Post-doc or researcher positions open in the following projects:

  • Empathic Experience Design for Universal Design
  • Measuring Innovation and Risk in Engineering Design
  • User centered approach to smart home design (Smart Grids)

PhD positions
See projects here, or propose in any of the listed research areas!

2018-07-18T09:35:33+00:00