Modularization as a system life cycle management strategy: Drivers, barriers, mechanisms and impacts

Guido J.L. Micheli*, Paolo Trucco, Yasmine Sabri, Mauro Mancini

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This literature-grounded research contributes to a deeper understanding of modularization as a system life cycle management strategy, by providing a comprehensive view of its key barriers, drivers, possible mechanisms of implementation and impact. This comprehensive view, arranged into a decision-making–driven ontology, enables a decision maker to systematically identify modularization implementation opportunities in different industrial and service domains. The proposed ontology transforms modularization into a fully operationalizable strategy and contributes to a paradigm shift in the understanding of modularization, from a pure design option (i.e. modularity) to a fully strategic choice that, by nature, impacts on many of the system’s life cycle phases and involves a number of stakeholders.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-23
JournalInternational Journal of Engineering Business Management
Early online date10 Feb 2019
Publication statusPublished - 10 Feb 2019

Bibliographical note

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License ( which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (


  • barriers
  • drivers
  • impact
  • life cycle
  • mechanisms
  • Modularization
  • ontology


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