DESIGN MANAGEMENT TO INCREASE SMALL AND MEDIUM MULTISECTOR ENTERPRISES (SMES) COMPETITIVENESS: INTERDISCIPLINARY EXPERIENCE WITH PUBLIC FUNDING

J. Alarcón1, M. Lecuona2, G. Ormeño1

1Universidad del Bio-Bio (CHILE)
2Universidad Politécnica de Valencia (SPAIN)
This article explores the three disciplines joint work to increase SMEs competitivenes, by incorporating non-traditional innovation factors as part of Innova Bío-Bío pilot experience, the Agency of Technology of Bío Bío Region in Chile which offers public pilot programs to universities, where 45 students from three different disciplines, Industrial Design, Industrial Civil Engineering and Commercial Engineering, will conduct innovation and design for 15 Small and Medium multisector Enterprises (SMEs). Students were arranged into interdisciplinary team including one student from each discipline, who were trained in management methodologies of design and innovation for mutual understanding of every discipline skills and explore the contribution of each one to the business case assigned. Methodology includes joint training phases for businessmen and students, who are led by interdisciplinary team leading project and international experts. The interdisciplinary experience has enabled designing innovative solutions favoring credibility by employers. Types of products developed has covered both placing in the market managed and produced products by companies, allowing renew offer, as well as enabled the development and implementation of products, which have improved production processes of SMEs involved.