Using Controlled Experiments to Calibrate Computer Models: The Airplane Game as a Lean Simulation Exercise

Zofia K. Rybkowski1, John-Michael Wong2, Glenn Ballard3 & Iris D. Tommelein4

1PhD Candidate, Engineering and Project Management Program, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, 215-A McLaughlin Hall, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-1712, Phone +1 510/684-5729, cezkr@berkeley.edu
2PhD Candidate, Structural Engineering, Mechanics and Materials Program, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, 760 Davis Hall, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720- 1710, Phone +1 510/910-3716, jmwong@ce.berkeley.edu
3Research Director, Project Production Systems Laboratory, http://p2sl.berkeley.edu/, and Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, 215-A McLaughlin Hall, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-1712, Phone +1 415/710-5531, ballard@ce.berkeley.edu
4Director, Project Production Systems Laboratory, http://p2sl.berkeley.edu/, Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, 215-A McLaughlin Hall, University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720-1712, Phone +1 510/643-8678, FAX +1 510/643-8919, tommelein@ce.berkeley.edu

Abstract

Simulation games may be used to introduce lean principles to those who are considering implementing them. However, they can also function as controlled experiments against which to calibrate a computer model and they can even be adapted to serve as the gold standard of scientific experimentation, the randomizedcontrolled trial. Results generated from a live playing of the Airplane Game validate an EZStrobe computer-based simulation model representing one part of the game. Close alignment of results suggests that the computer model will likely be able to accurately predict outcomes from similarly structured, real life activities, such as those encountered in a design office or on a construction site.

Keywords

lean, Airplane Game, discrete-event simulation, controlled experiment, randomized controlled trial, EZStrobe

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Reference

Rybkowski, Z.K. , Wong, J. , Ballard, G. & Tommelein, I.D. 2008, 'Using Controlled Experiments to Calibrate Computer Models: The Airplane Game as a Lean Simulation Exercise' In:, Tzortzopoulos, P. & Kagioglou, M., 16th Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction. Manchester, UK, 16-18 Jul 2008. pp 309-319

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