Engineering Research Center  People

Engineering Research Center  People

Professor  Kazuo Furuta
Division: System Resilience Engineering



List of Research Topics

1. Interactive Method for Service Design

An interactive method for a service design is proposed for services that depend heavily upon human expertise and performance. Using this method, a simulation model of the service processes was constructed based on ethnographic field observations, and the model was validated by showing the simulation results to field experts in a visualized form. During the course of proposing and assessing the design options, the opinions of the field experts were repeatedly acquired by showing them the simulation results. Through such an interactive design process, their expertise was thereby reflected in the final design. To demonstrate the effectiveness and usefulness of the proposed design method, the method was applied to ground aircraft operations at a large airport. A simulation model of the service processes at Tokyo International (Haneda) Airport was constructed, and a simulation system was developed on a Java platform for Windows PCs. It was then demonstrated that the simulation can replicate well the observed data of ground aircraft operations. It was also shown that the proposed design method is useful for creating new design options for ground aircraft operations and comparatively assessing them for improving the service performance.

  • 1) Makino, Y., Furuta, K., Kanno, T., Yoshihara, S., and Mase, T., Interactive method for service design using computer simulation, Service Science, 1, 2, pp. 121-134 (2009).
  • 2) Makino, Y., Nakamura, S., Yoshihara, S., Mase, T., Kanno, T., and Furuta, K., Designing ground aircraft operation at large airport by simulation, 17th Annual Frontiers in Service Conf. 2008, Washington, DC, USA, 107 (2008).
  • 3) Nakamura, S., Furuta, K., Kanno, T., Yoshihara, S., and Mase, T., Multi-agent simulation of ground aircraft operations at a large airport, Proc. 3rd Int.ICST Conf. on Simulation Tools and Techniques (SIMUTools 2010), Torremolinos, Spain, CD-ROM (2010).

2. Incident management

Incident management is a key activity for collecting relevant information and improving business processes for the purpose of organizational safety, and whether the field staff can efficiently make high-quality reports and analyze the collected information can occasionally be a bottleneck. The objective of this work is to establish a method for providing computer support to practitioners of incident management in certain application domains such as medical care or the airline industry. Based on a review of accumulated reports and interviews with cabin crew members, an ontology of the target business was constructed, which contains structuralized terms on the equipment, staff members, tasks, causality of unsafe events, and so on. This ontology is used to provide support for making reports, analyzing the causality of events, proposing countermeasures, and so on. The descriptions of an event in a free-text form will be linguistically processed, and the terms in the descriptions will be mapped onto the ontology to determine typical patterns of event causation. This architecture can provide useful support for improving the efficiency and reliability of incident management.

  • 1) Asada, Y., Kanno, T., and Furuta, K., Development of incident report analysis system based on m-SHEL ontology, Proc. European Safety and Reliability Conf. (ESREL) 2008, Valencia, Spain, 1593-1598 (2008).
  • 2) Asada, Y., Furuta, K., and Kanno, T., Design of an Incident Report Analysis System for Healthcare, Proc. European Safety and Reliability (ESREL) Conf. 2009, Prague, Czech, 1963-1966 (2009).

3. Resilience of network service systems

The center of industry is gradually shifting toward services rather than agriculture or manufacturing, particularly in industrialized countries. An extreme view for dealing with services systematically is the Service System Worldview, where the world as a whole is assumed to be a huge service system. What makes it difficulty in implementing resilience in service systems is an issue how to deal with the interdependencies between different service systems. Such interdependencies will be implicit while the system is working under normal conditions, but they will become apparent when many service systems are affected by disruptive conditions concurrently, such as in a wide range of natural disasters. We are attempting to model service systems, infrastructure systems, and life systems as a whole, and to assess the resilience of these systems using sophisticated simulation techniques. One example problem is how to recover the critical infrastructure after a devastating natural disaster when considering a maximization of the public’s utility. We proposed a combination of a multi-layered network model, multi-agent model, and genetic algorithm to solve this problem in a virtual setting. The model will be extended and applied to disaster response management in a more realistic setting than the previous one.

  • 1) Fujii, T., Kanno, T., and Furuta, K., Modeling dialysis service in disaster for the assessment of its Resilience, Proc. European Safety and Reliability (ESREL) Conf. 2010, Rhodes, Greece, 2382-2386 (2010).
  • 2) Lubashevskiy, V., Kanno, T., and Furuta, K., Resource redistribution as a mechanism of resilience: Effects of information incompleteness and delay, Proc. Int. Conf. Simulation Technol. (JSST 2012), Tokyo, OS10(3) (2013).
  • 3) Wang, J. W., Wang, H. F., Zhang, W. J., Ip, W. H., and Furuta, K., Evacuation planning based on the contraflow technique with consideration of evacuation priorities and traffic setup time, IEEE Trans. Intelligent Transportation Systems, Vol. 14, No. 1, 480-485 (2013).


・安全学入門, 日科技連(2007)
・K.Furuta, et al. Advances in Air Navigation Services, ISBN 979-953-307-795-5, 69-86 (2012).
・Y.Soraji, et al. Int. J. Cognition, Technology, and Work, 14, 2, 93-105 (2012).
・Y.Makino, et al. Service Science, 1, 2, 121-134 (2009).