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Wednesday, December 14, 2016



Part A

 1. Describe the different types of communication networks. Which communication network structure is most often observed in the following situations?

(a) An address from the CEO of a company regarding punctuality.

(b) A group discussion on the importance of civic virtues.

(c ) Solving a math problem with a group of friends.

(d) A supervisor asking for information from his subordinate.

2 What are the sources of creativity? Bring out how motivation influences creative output.

3. How can brainstorming and multi voting be used by groups for solving problems? What advantages does the Nominal Group Technique (NGT) have over these?

4. Define b) Professional Integrity c) Academic Integrity d) Empathy e) Self-confidence.

5. What is the difference between leadership and management? Elaborate on VUCA leadership.
(5*6=30 marks)

Part B

6. Read the paragraphs given below and answer the questions given below NASA's fleet of Challenger space shuttles started operating in 1983. STS-51-L was the tenth Challenger mission. The launch had been postponed several times before, and was finally scheduled for 28thJanuary, 1986 from Kennedy Space Center, Florida.

NASA was very anxious to complete the launch due to pressure from different quarters. The winter that year was particularly cold and on the night before the launch, the mercury sank to 13 degrees below zero. On the night of the 27th, all those responsible for the shuttle were expected to check and re-check their part of the vehicle and okay the launch. Though some of the officials couldn't check everything thoroughly they okayed the launch.

Alan McDonald, an engineer from Morton Thiokol – the company that built the solid rocket boosters (SRB) of the space shuttle- refused to sign the document. He knew that the rubber O-Rings which seal the SRBs had never been tested at such low temperatures and felt that the low temperature could cause the O-Rings to crack and fail in flight. He conveyed the message to his superior Joseph Kilminster, and also contacted Larry Mulloy of NASA.

A teleconference was held between NASA & Morton Thiokol. Two engineers – Roger Boisjoly & Arnold Thompson – who had worked on the project confirmed that the rings had never been tested under such low temperature conditions and pointed out that it might be dangerous to launch. They tried to convey their point with graphs and charts, but the management of Morton Thiokol were not convinced.

NASA too, interpreted the absence of data as consent for the launch. So Joseph Kilminster overruled Alan McDonald and gave his okay. Larry Mulloy too,was happy with that decision. On the morning of the 28th, in spite of the objections raised by McDonald, Boisjoly & Thompson, NASA proceeded with the launch. At 11.38 am, the shuttle lifted off carrying seven astronauts including a civilian. Smoke started coming out of the SRB joint and gave way to flames. Within 72 seconds, the flames had spread to the external fuel tank. At 73 seconds, there was a massive explosion and the Challenger space shuttle disintegrated, killing all seven people on board.

a) Identify the key players in this case. (2)

b) What, if any, professional responsibilities were neglected by the key players in this case? (4)

c) What role did failure of effective communication play in the Challenger disaster? (4)

d) Identify the moral and ethical issues involved in the above case. (4)

e) As engineers, what are the lessons learnt from this case (2)

f) Imagine you are in place of Joseph Kilminster. Following the steps for group problem solving, elaborate how a meeting of the key players can be orgnized so that their concerns are addressed effectively.
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