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Modeling Consumer Decisions on Returning End-of-Use Products Considering Design Features and Consumer Interactions: An Agent Based Simulation Approach

[+] Author Affiliations
Ardeshir Raihanian Mashhadi, Sara Behdad

University at Buffalo - SUNY, Buffalo, NY

Behzad Esmaeilian

Northeastern University, Boston, MA

Paper No. DETC2015-46864, pp. V02AT03A019; 13 pages
doi:10.1115/DETC2015-46864
From:
  • ASME 2015 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 2A: 41st Design Automation Conference
  • Boston, Massachusetts, USA, August 2–5, 2015
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division, Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5707-6
  • Copyright © 2015 by ASME

abstract

As electronic waste (e-waste) becomes one of the fastest growing environmental concerns, remanufacturing is considered as a promising solution. However, the profitability of take back systems is hampered by several factors including the lack of information on the quantity and timing of to-be-returned used products to a remanufacturing facility. Product design features, consumers’ awareness of recycling opportunities, socio-demographic information, peer pressure, and the tendency of customer to keep used items in storage are among contributing factors in increasing uncertainties in the waste stream. Predicting customer choice decisions on returning back used products, including both the time in which the customer will stop using the product and the end-of-use decisions (e.g. storage, resell, through away, and return to the waste stream) could help manufacturers have a better estimation of the return trend. The objective of this paper is to develop an Agent Based Simulation (ABS) model integrated with Discrete Choice Analysis (DCA) technique to predict consumer decisions on the End-of-Use (EOU) products. The proposed simulation tool aims at investigating the impact of design features, interaction among individual consumers and socio-demographic characteristics of end users on the number of returns. A numerical example of cellphone take-back system has been provided to show the application of the model.

Copyright © 2015 by ASME
Topics: Simulation , Design , Modeling

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