The Evolution of Manufacturing Systems: From Craftsmanship to the Era of Customisation

The Evolution of Manufacturing Systems: From Craftsmanship to the Era of Customisation

Dimitris Mourtzis (University of Patras, Greece) and Michael Doukas (University of Patras, Greece)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-5039-8.ch001
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Abstract

The transition from local economies to the global competitive landscape and the current fluctuating customer demands drives a never-ending transformation of manufacturing systems. In combination with prominent technological advances and other socio-political reasons of each era, such changes led to the evolution of manufacturing paradigms systems from craftsmanship to automation and decentralisation. This transition created the necessity for new means of designing, planning, and controlling manufacturing companies and networks. In production early stages, manufacturing was viewed as a functional area. On the other hand, current production paradigms are based on the customer focus and view manufacturing as an enterprise. This major diversification led to the gradual reorganisation of manufacturing systems in order to achieve mass customisation of typically mass-produced products. The purpose of this chapter is to specify the evolution of manufacturing paradigms, their basic principles, and the links among them. A discussion on future trends of manufacturing paradigms derives from the review and is finally presented.
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Evolution Of Manufacturing Paradigms

The manufacturing industry, since its birth two centuries ago, has evolved through a number of paradigms. The most prevailing manufacturing paradigms that characterised significant periods of time are chronologically: Craft Production, American Production, Mass Production, Lean Production, Mass Customisation and Global Manufacturing. Each paradigm had its time-span, was supported by a specific type of manufacturing system and operated based on specific business model (Table 1).

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