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Key Challenges in Decision Making for Automotive E/E Architectures



Publication Type:

Licentiate Thesis


Mälardalen University Press


The amount of electronics in vehicles is growing quickly, thus systems are becoming increasingly complex making the engineering of these software intensive systems more and more difficult. In particular, an architecture supporting the business goals is a prerequisite for successful design.In this thesis two case studies have been made including three automotive companies with purpose to investigate the key issues related to real-world decisions when developing Electrical and Electronic (E/E) system architectures in the automotive industry.The results show that many of the identified issues relate to non technical areas such as organization, process, methods and tools, and management. Examples of identified issues are the deficient understanding of the electrical system and software at management level, and the lack of a specific process for architecture development. To cope with these issues we suggest the following actions: Educate management, increase the use of structured decision making, improve the architecture development process, clarify responsibilities in the organization and clarify development strategies.As a possible solution to one of the suggested actions we have developed a method to evaluate how new functionality is successfully integrated into an existing architecture. The method is a combination of the Architecture Tradeoff Analysis Method, ATAM, and the Analytical Hierarchy Process, AHP. The method firstly supports a structured way of listing system goals, and secondly, it also supports the making of design decisions.


author = {Peter Wallin},
title = {Key Challenges in Decision Making for Automotive E/E Architectures},
number = {93},
month = {October},
year = {2008},
publisher = {M{\"a}lardalen University Press},
url = {}