Exploration of set-based design for reinforced concrete structures

Kristen Parrish, John Michael Wong, Iris D. Tommelein, Bozidar Stojadinovic

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

29 Scopus citations


To explore the feasibility of improving the delivery process of reinforced concrete, we focus in this paper on reinforcing bars (rebar) used in cast-in-place (CIP) concrete. Specifically, we describe the methodology for set-based design of rebar that we are pursuing in an ongoing research effort. Set-based design makes it possible to maintain feasible solutions for longer in the design process than is otherwise affordable using point-based design. It thereby allows for input from several project participants at the same time and early on, as well as throughout project delivery. Set-based communication helps participants avoid rework and through teamwork develop a more globally satisfactory design solution than would otherwise be the case. To illustrate the methodology, we examine the canonical example of reinforcement at a beam-column joint and study the relationships between those who design the joint and those who fabricate and install it: mainly the structural engineer, the fabricator, and the rebar placer. The set-based approach for concrete design is promising. It warrants further effort in characterizing sets at different levels of absion and in articulating what different participants value, both of which are needed for sets to be narrowed effectively and for the process to lead to a solution.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationLean Construction: A New Paradigm for Managing Capital Projects - 15th IGLC Conference
Number of pages10
StatePublished - 2007
Externally publishedYes
Event15th Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction IGLC 15 - East Lansing, MI, United States
Duration: Jul 18 2007Jul 20 2007


Other15th Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction IGLC 15
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityEast Lansing, MI


  • Design management
  • Design methodology
  • Lean construction
  • Product development
  • Product modelling
  • Production system design
  • Rebar
  • Reinforced concrete
  • Set-based design

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction


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