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Graduate courses

Departments' graduate courses for PhD-students.


Syllabus for

Academic year
PPU085 - Product planning - needs and opportunities
Syllabus adopted 2014-02-19 by Head of Programme (or corresponding)
Owner: MPPDE
7,5 Credits
Grading: TH - Five, Four, Three, Not passed
Education cycle: Second-cycle
Major subject: Industrial Engineering and Management, Mechanical Engineering, Industrial Design Engineering

Teaching language: English
Open for exchange students
Block schedule: D

Course module   Credit distribution   Examination dates
Sp1 Sp2 Sp3 Sp4 Summer course No Sp
0107 Examination 7,5 c Grading: TH   7,5 c   14 Jan 2015 pm M,  17 Apr 2015 pm V,  20 Aug 2015 pm M

In programs



Professor  MariAnne Karlsson
Professor  Johan Malmqvist

Course evaluation:


In order to be eligible for a second cycle course the applicant needs to fulfil the general and specific entry requirements of the programme that owns the course. (If the second cycle course is owned by a first cycle programme, second cycle entry requirements apply.)
Exemption from the eligibility requirement: Applicants enrolled in a programme at Chalmers where the course is included in the study programme are exempted from fulfilling these requirements.

Course specific prerequisites

Same as the Product Development Programme, MPPDE.


The aims are that the student should develop an understanding of how product development coincides with business development and the fundamentals of product planning and analysis of different stakeholders' needs and requirements.

Learning outcomes (after completion of the course the student should be able to)

  • Describe and reflect upon how product development coincides with business development. This means to be able to:
    • Explain the rationale behind new product development
    • Describe different business growth models and argue their applicability in different situations 
    • Describe and use established tools for carrying out an analysis of market trends, and conclude on the business implications of the analysis
  • Explain and differentiate between the meaning of key terms such as customer/user/consumer, values/benefits, needs/wants/demands/requirements etc. 
  • Elicit and interpret customers', users' and other stakeholders' needs and requirements for a product/technical solution
  • Describe and use known principles for planning and executing a study for eliciting customer/user needs and requirements for a technical product. This means, be able to:
    • describe and be able to employ a process for eliciting, analysing, and communicating market information;
    • describe and make an efficient choice between different methods and tools for eliciting and analysing market information;
    • describe and make an efficient choice between different methods and tools for communicating customer needs and requirements
  • Identify opportunities that derive from new technologies and services, and latent needs
  • Compile information about and assess the state-of-the-art in a particular technological domain and/or application area
  • Describe and analyze a novel technological idea as regards e.g. freedom to operate, novelty, competition and potential application areas through the use of patent databases, benchmarking and other means
  • Assess technology readiness and use that to develop strategic product and technology development plans
  • Develop a mission statement for a particular product development project
  • Cooperate in a group with international members 
  • Communicate orally and in writing with different groups in English


The content of the course encompasses:
  • Different perspectives in product development and their consequences for product development activities
  • Proactive and reactive approaches to new product development
  • Trend analysis and applicable tools
  • Product positioning and applicable tools 
  • Key concepts in a customer and user centred product development process 
  • Theoretical basis for customer/user eliciting needs and requirements; the accessibility of different requirements; requirements from a competitive perspective
  • Processes, methods and tools in the early phases of product development including methods and tools for eliciting and interpreting needs and requirements
  • Immaterial property rights
  • Strategic development of products and technologies
  • Specifications and other tools for communicating customer/user needs and requirements


The course is organized as a series of lectures, seminars, and assignments.


To be announced at course start.


The examination of the course is based on attending and being active in scheduled seminars, two project assignments and a short, written exam. Each assignment will be graded according to F(ail), 3, 4, or 5. The written exam will be graded according to F(ail), 3, 4, or 5.

Page manager Published: Thu 04 Feb 2021.