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Graduate courses

Departments' graduate courses for PhD-students.


Syllabus for

Academic year
PPU085 - Product planning - needs and opportunities  
Produktplanering - behov och möjligheter
Syllabus adopted 2019-09-12 by Head of Programme (or corresponding)
Owner: MPPDE
7,5 Credits
Grading: TH - Five, Four, Three, Fail
Education cycle: Second-cycle
Major subject: Industrial Engineering and Management, Mechanical Engineering, Industrial Design Engineering

Teaching language: English
Application code: 33114
Open for exchange students: No
Block schedule: D
Maximum participants: 60

Module   Credit distribution   Examination dates
Sp1 Sp2 Sp3 Sp4 Summer course No Sp
0107 Examination 7,5c Grading: TH   7,5c   15 Jan 2020 pm SB_MU   08 Apr 2020 pm DIST   20 Aug 2020 pm J DIG

In programs



Johan Malmqvist

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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)

  • Explain what is meant by a product's (market) lifecycle and its implications for companies product planning
  • Explain the role, tasks organization and deliverables of product planning
  • Describe and use established tools for carrying out an analysis of societal and market trends, and conclude on the business implications of the analysis
  • Explain what is meant by market segmentation and describe aspects by which a market can be segmented.
  • Carry out a segmentation of the market for a defined product (area)
  • Describe what a business model is and how it
    can be document in a business model canvas
  • Explain and differentiate between the meaning of key terms such as customer/user/consumer, needs/customer/user or engineering requirements etc. 
  • Explain why different requirements are more or less accessible using, for example the Kano model and the Iceberg phenomenon as bases
  • Explain the differences between exploratory and confirmatory research in the early phases of product development
  • Explain what is meant by primary research and exemplify the information sources that can be used
  • Explain what is meant by secondary research and exemplify the information sources that can be used
  • Relate different types of research methods/tools to different market research purposes/objectives
  • Choose between and combine primary and secondary sources in customer needs mapping
  • Plan and execute a study for eliciting customer/user needs and requirements for a technical product, including to make a purposeful choice between different methods and tools for eliciting, analysing, communicating and documenting customer needs and requirements
  • Describe the principles of and apply tools for analysing qualitative and quantitative (market and customer needs) data respectively
  • Identify product 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 analyse 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
  • Account for how product planning is carried out in selected corporate contexts
  • Cooperate in a group with international members 
  • Communicate orally and in writing with different groups in English


  • Product definition, product planning and product portfolio
  • Strategic development of products and technologies
  • Patents & intellectual property rights
  • Product benchmarking and positioning
  • Methods for analysing societal and market trends
  • Key concepts in a customer and user centred product development process 
  • Theoretical basis for customer/user eliciting needs and requirements
  • Processes, methods and tools in the early phases of product development including methods and tools for eliciting and interpreting needs and requirements
  • Qualitative and quantitative methods for customer data collection
  • Customer needs specifications and other tools for communicating customer/user needs and requirements


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


To be announced at course start.

Examination including compulsory elements

The examination of the course is based on attending and being active in scheduled seminars, two guest lectures, a workshop, a project assignment and a written exam. The project assignment and the written exam are graded according to F(ail), 3, 4, or 5.

Published: Wed 26 Feb 2020.