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Durham University

Research & business

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Publication details for Dr Atanu Chaudhuri

Dixit, V., Chaudhuri, A. & Srivastava, R.K. (2019). Assessing value of customer involvement in engineered-to-order shipbuilding projects using fuzzy set and rough set theories. International Journal of Production Research 57(22): 6943-6962.

Author(s) from Durham


Customer involvement plays a crucial role in engineered-to-order (ETO) projects. The present study investigates the involvement of customers, with thorough technical knowledge, as resources and co-producers. The study also analyses the impact of customer involvement in sourcing decisions and project execution on project performance (PP) of ETO shipbuilding projects by considering project and customer characteristics. The contributions of this study to the current body of knowledge on customer involvement in ETO projects are twofold. First, it demonstrates that customer involvement at different stages of shipbuilding projects have differential impacts on PP. Customer involvement in sourcing decisions during the early stages of the project has a positive impact, whereas involvement in project execution during the later stages of the project has a negative impact on PP. Second, it reveals that project complexity and customer type together significantly affect the PP. Therefore, the role of project complexity and customer type as potential contingent factors in explaining PP is emphasised. This study also makes a significant methodological contribution by demonstrating the use of fuzzy inference system and rough set theory to analyse qualitative inputs from interviews, when conducting surveys is not possible.