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TRIZ is the Russian acronym for "теория решения изобретательских задач" (Teoria reschenija isobretatjelskich sadatsch); the same translated means "theory of inventive problem solving" or "Theory of solving inventive problems" or in English Inventive "Theory of Problem Solving (TIPS ) ".


The method was launched by Genrich Saulowitsch Altschuller and Rafael Borissowitsch Shapiro under the influence of Dmitri Dmitrijevitsch Kabanov around 1954-1956. In retrospect, the start of the research was often given as 1948 or even 1946 by G. Altschuller. However, these earlier data could not be documented (cf. “How many parents does TRIZ have?”).

TRIZ approach for creative problem solving

TRIZ was created on the basis of the assumption that by sifting through a large number of patent specifications, then selecting and valuing those describing technical breakthroughs, one would discover generally applicable innovative principles and even laws of invention. G. Altschuller and R. Shapiro recognized three essential principles as early as 1956:

  1. A large number of inventions are based on a comparatively small number of general solution principles.
  2. It is only by overcoming contradictions that innovative developments are possible.
  3. The evolution of technical systems follows certain patterns and laws.

With the help of this method, inventors try to systematize their activities in order to come up with new problem solutions faster and more efficiently . The TRIZ method has meanwhile spread worldwide and is "in rapid development" ( Zobel ).

In the Anglo-Saxon language area, the term TIPS ( Theory of Inventive Problem Solving ) is also common.

The TRIZ contains a number of methodical tools that make it easier to define and analyze a specific technical problem based on a target description in order to break it down to its abstract components and to find a solution in the abstract space. The abstract solution is then creatively translated into possible specific solutions; a solution is selected from this amount.

This prevents the problem from being prematurely deduced to a solution. Instead, TRIZ uses a stock of already existing solution processes.

The methods of classic TRIZ are:

  1. Innovation principles and contradiction table
  2. Separation principles for solving physical contradictions
  3. Algorithm or step-by-step method for solving invention problems ( ARIZ )
  4. System of 76 standard solutions and substance-field analysis ( SFA , formerly also called WEPOL analysis (Russian))
  5. S-curves and laws of the development of systems (evolution laws of technical development, laws of technical evolution)
  6. Principle (law) of ideality
  7. Modeling of technical systems with the help of "little men" (dwarf models)

Further methods that are assigned to TRIZ, but which are not included in the classic teaching, but were developed by Altschuller's students, are:

  1. Innovation checklist (Innovation Situation Questionaire)
  2. Functional structure according to TRIZ (a kind of cause-effect graph but not the Ishikawa diagram of Ishikawa Kaoru corresponds, is also known problem formulation)
  3. SAO functional model (Subject-Action-Object, an extended functional model based on Miles' basic work on "value analysis")
  4. Process analysis
  5. GZK operator (size-time-cost)
  6. Anticipatory error detection
  7. Resource checklists

Contradiction table and 40 innovative principles

In most cases, TRIZ does not mean the above-mentioned collection of methods and tools, but only refers to the contradiction table and the 40 innovative principles as "the TRIZ". However, these are controversial in the professional world in terms of handling and mode of action.

The TRIZ contains 40 principles or “40 rules of innovation” (sometimes also 40 innovative principles, 40 IGP - 40 innovative basic principles called). One of these rules is the “principle of the nesting doll (matryoshka)” (also called “integration”): You transfer an object into the inside of another.

These abstract rules are in detail:

  1. Disassembly
  2. separation
  3. Local quality
  4. asymmetry
  5. coupling
  6. universality
  7. Integration (plug-in doll, matryoshka)
  8. Counterweight
  9. Previous counteraction (early counteraction)
  10. Previous effect (earlier effect)
  11. Principle of the "previously placed pillow" (prevention)
  12. Equipotentiality
  13. Function reversal (inversion)
  14. Similarity to spheres (spheroidality)
  15. Dynamization
  16. Partial or excessive effect
  17. Transition to other dimensions (transition to higher dimension)
  18. Use of mechanical vibrations
  19. Periodic effect
  20. Continuity of useful effect (continuity of active processes)
  21. Principle of rushing through (skipping)
  22. Conversion of harmful into useful
  23. Feedback
  24. Principle of the "mediator"
  25. Self service
  26. Copy
  27. Cheap short life instead of expensive long life
  28. Replacement of the mechanical system (replacement of mechanical operating principles)
  29. Use of pneumo and hydrosystems
  30. Use of flexible sleeves and thin foils
  31. Use of porous materials
  32. Color change
  33. Similarity (homogeneity)
  34. Elimination and regeneration of the parts
  35. Change in physical and chemical properties (change in physical state)
  36. Application of phase transitions
  37. Application of thermal expansion
  38. Use of strong oxidizing agents
  39. Use of an inert medium (use of an inert medium)
  40. Use of composite materials (use of composite materials)

These rules are mostly used in connection with a so-called contradiction matrix or contradiction table. This matrix has different technical parameters in the first row and in the first column (in an identical order). In the individual fields of the matrix, the individual parameters are thus (similar to a season game table in soccer) opposite one another. The diagonal of the matrix remains empty, because here one and the same parameter is facing each other (that would have to be solved with the physical contradictions). As far as the other fields are concerned, it is assumed that the assigned parameter in the column is supposed to improve, while the parameter in the corresponding row deteriorates as a result. Herein lies the contradiction. The field in which row and column intersect names the innovative basic rules of TRIZ using individual numbers, which can help to overcome this contradiction. A developer who works with the contradiction matrix must therefore first be clear about which parameters of the system he is developing should be improved. He then has to determine which other parameters would usually be worsened by these improvements. Finally, the developer abstracts these parameters so that he can assign them to parameters of the first row and column of the contradiction matrix. Ultimately, this brings him to the abstract rules of TRIZ, which are suitable to help overcome the contradictions that arise during development. On the basis of examples and the concretization of the rules for the development object, thoughts are stimulated how the existing development contradictions can be overcome.

An example of a contradiction is the conflict between the desire to reduce the mass of a component and its required strength, which can possibly be resolved by the principle of using porous materials. Another example of the effectiveness of one of the above-mentioned solution principles, namely “separation”, is the relocation of the condensation process from the cylinder to a condenser in James Watt's steam engine, in contrast to Newcomen's machines , in which the condensation of the steam - combined with high energy losses - took place in the cylinder. For a precise explanation and specification of the TRIZ rules and examples, reference is made to the specialist literature mentioned below.

Most German-speaking TRIZ experts are not aware that Altschuller himself set up principles 41 to 50, which did not make it into the official list due to a lack of verifiability.

Effectiveness of the table

The solution principles suggested by the contradiction table usually do not provide ready-made solutions, but rather encourage the user to think in the right direction. The solution is often found in a combination of different principles.

In practice, however, it is not easy to precisely formulate a technical contradiction for a specific task using the contradiction table. A simplification would therefore be a direct, time-saving application of innovation principles in the order of their statistical frequency of application.

After the experience of numerous problem solutions (Pavel Livotov, Wladimir Petrow) the first 10 principles from this list provide usable solutions for approx. 60% of all tasks:

  • 35. Change in physical and chemical properties
  • 10. Previous effect
  • 1. Disassembly
  • 28. Replace the mechanical system
  • 2. Separation
  • 15. Dynamization
  • 19. Periodic effect
  • 18. Exploitation of mechanical vibrations
  • 32. Color change
  • 13. Function reversal (inversion)

Basically, the 40 innovation principles are well suited to solving mild to moderately difficult problems.

Alternative procedure according to S. Fayer

According to Fayer, the table of contradictions has had its day. He suggests dividing the innovation principles into four groups. These can be used to address specific problems. The following groups and their associated innovative principles are proposed:

  • Group 1: You want to change something in a substance (quantity, quality, structure, shape):
    1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 14, 17, 30, 31, 40
  • Group 2: You want to eliminate harmful interactions or factors:
    9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 19, 21, 23, 24, 26, 33, 39
  • Group 3: You want to reduce costs, increase effectiveness and / or improve ideality:
    5, 6, 15, 16, 20, 25, 26, 34
  • Group 4: You want to use scientific effects, fields and special substances:
    8, 18, 28, 29, 32, 35, 36, 37, 38 + 30, 31, 40

Matrix 2003

With Matrix 2003, the classic contradiction matrix is ​​being re-launched in a revised form. The authors recognized the value of the matrix, but were also aware of the negative sides and the problems. Therefore they carried out a patent search in which they sifted through 150,000 patents in order to create an update of the contradiction matrix. The new Matrix 2003 has 48 technical parameters and, in addition to the 40 innovative principles, 37 of the most important combination and special principles are presented. In their patent studies, the authors found that the hit probability of the 2003 matrix based on “randomly” selected examples was significantly higher than with the old matrix.

Physical contradictions and separation principles

A physical contradiction occurs when one and the same parameter of a technical system would have to assume two states at the same time. This means, for example, that an object must be hot and cold at the same time. The physical contradictions can be found within the technical contradictions, i.e. H. In essence, every technical contradiction is based on physical contradictions. In the contradiction table this corresponds to the diagonal on which there is no contradiction. The physical contradiction is based on mutually exclusive states related to a single function, a component or the function of the overall system (Herb, p. 131).

In order to resolve a physical contradiction, TRIZ knows four separation principles:

  • Separation in space
  • Separation in time
  • Separation within an object and its parts
  • Separation by changing conditions

Dwarf model

Of terms: The dwarfs model is in the first translations as modeling using "less characters," and as a method of the small figures denoted (sales promotion). You can also read the designation Smart Dwarfs , Dwarf Technology , The Little Dwarfs or Model of the Clever Dwarfs .

Description: The dwarf model tries to circumvent the inadequacies of personal analogy ( identification ) in synectics . Man has problems with imagining that his body is being destroyed or damaged. Hence, the human mind avoids these schools of thought. The dwarf model circumvents this by imagining the object composed of a large number of dwarfs.

Laws of the development of systems

Explanation of terms: In addition to the original term laws of the development of systems (Altschuller, p. 186), definitions such as technical development trends , laws of technical evolution or evolutionary principles of technical systems are also used. In English usage, the following terms are used for this tool: Trends of Evolution , Trends of Technological Evolution , Patterns of Evolution or TESE - Trends of Engineering System Evolution .

Description: The laws governing the development of systems provide information on how a technical system will develop. This is based on the observations in the history and can thus make certain predictions. These predictions are very abstract and represent more of a task or a vision that makes it possible to develop ideas for concrete further steps.

In the literature there are currently only the 8 laws that Altschuller himself drafted or the eight of Terninko, Zusman and Zlotin. There is, however, extensive further work on these development laws, which allows a significantly improved work. The following are the 8 laws as described by Altschuller:

  1. Law of the completeness of the parts of a system: Necessary conditions for the viability of a technical system are the existence of the main parts of the system and a minimal functionality of them.
  2. Law of the “energetic conductivity” of a system: A necessary condition for the viability of a technical system is the flow of energy through all parts of the system.
  3. Law of coordination of the rhythm of the parts of a system: A necessary condition for the viability of a technical system is the coordination of the rhythm (the oscillation frequency, the periodicity) of all parts of the system.
  4. Law of increasing the degree of ideality of a system : The development of all systems proceeds in the direction of increasing the degree of ideality.
  5. Law of the unevenness of the development of the parts of a system: The development of the parts of a system is uneven; the more complicated the system, the more unevenly the development of its parts.
  6. Law of transition to a higher system: After exhaustion of its development possibilities , a system is accepted as a part in a higher system: Further development takes place at the level of the upper system.
  7. Law of the transition from the macro level to the micro level: The development of the working organs of a system takes place first on the macro level and then on the micro level.
  8. Law of increasing the proportion of substance-field systems: The development of technical systems moves towards increasing the proportion and role of substance-field interactions.


Disambiguation: The ideality actually belongs to the laws of development of systems. However, it is often viewed as a tool in its own right. The ideal final result (IER) (English Ideal Final Result (IFR) ) is an auxiliary construct in ARIZ occurs and is often associated with the ideality confused.

Description: An ideal system is a system that does not exist, but whose functions are still carried out. Its masses, volumes, and areas tend to zero without diminishing its ability to perform. If you imagine that on a phone, it might be easier. Actually, you don't want a phone, you want to "talk to a person (in the distance)". This function should always be retained, but the dimensions of the device should be reduced to zero. If you look at the development from the first telephones to the modern cell phones, you can easily understand this.

The ideality is usually understood to be the sum of all useful functions over the sum of all harmful functions, whereby the costs are partly added to the harmful functions. Vladimir Petrov and Avraam Seredinski indicate the level of ideality as follows:

I stands - ideality level;
F - useful function;
Q - quality of useful function;
C - the time and cost of implementing the useful function;
H - harmful;
α, β - adjustment factors.

Six ways to ideality are given in the literature:

  1. Eliminate supporting functions
  2. Eliminate parts
  3. Know self-service
  4. Replace individual parts, components or the entire system
  5. Change the principle of operation
  6. Use resources

See also

Individual evidence

  2. VDI Standard 4521. Inventive problem solving with TRIZ. Fundamentals, terms and definitions. Berlin 2016.
  3. a b c d e f Genrich Saulowitsch Altschuller: Inventing - ways to solve technical problems . 2nd Edition. Verlag Technik, Berlin 1986
  4.; TRIZ / TIPS - methodology of inventive problem solving
  5. The innovative principles for eliminating technical contradictions. Archived from the original on July 22, 2012 ; Retrieved October 18, 2015 .
  6. a b International TRIZ Association (MA TRIZ): Advanced Workshop on Theory for Inventive Problem Solving , MA TRIZ Level 3 training documents, December 2005
  7. Darrel Mann, Simon Dewulf, Boris Zlotin, Alla Zusman: Matrix 2003 - Updating the TRIZ Contradiction Matrix , CREAX Press, Ieper 2003, ISBN 90-77071-04-0
  9. a b c d e f g Rolf Herb (Ed.), John Terninko, Alla Zusman, Boris Zlotin: TRIZ - the way to an unrivaled successful product . Verlag Moderne Industrie, Landsberg / Lech 1998, 288 pages, ISBN 3-478-91920-7
  10. Carsten Gundlach, Horst Nähler: TRIZ - Theory of inventive problem solving . In: Innovation with TRIZ - concepts, tools, practical applications . Symposion Publishing GmbH, Düsseldorf 2006, ISBN 3-936608-74-1
  11. Jürgen Jantschgi, Leonid Shub: TRIZ - Innovative maze of tools? . In: Innovation with TRIZ - concepts, tools, practical applications . Symposion Publishing GmbH, Düsseldorf 2006, ISBN 3-936608-74-1
  12. Craig Stephan, Ralf Schmierer: Structured Inventive Thinking at Ford Motor Company . In: Innovation with TRIZ - concepts, tools, practical applications . Symposion Publishing GmbH, Düsseldorf 2006, ISBN 3-936608-74-1
  13. Jan Pellinghoff: TRIZ - practical experience at Siemens AG . In: Innovation with TRIZ - concepts, tools, practical applications . Symposion Publishing GmbH, Düsseldorf 2006, ISBN 3-936608-74-1
  14. a b c Rolf Herb, Thilo Herb, Veit Kohnhauser: TRIZ - The systematic path to innovation . Verlag Moderne Industrie, Landsberg / Lech 2000, 311 pages, ISBN 3-478-91980-0
  15. Pavel Livotov, Vlademir Petrov: TRIZ innovation technology - product development and problem solving. Manual. 2nd edition, TriSolver, Hannover 2005, 284 pages
  16. Darrell Mann, Simon Dewulf: TRIZ Companion . CREAX Press, Ieper 2002, 121 pages, ISBN 90-77071-03-2
  17. Darrell Mann: Hands-On Systematic Innovation . CREAX Press, Ieper 2002, 462 pages, ISBN 90-77071-02-4
  18. John Terniko, Alla Zusman, Boris Zlotin: Systematic Innovation - An Introduction to TRIZ (Theory of Inventive Problem Solving). St. Lucei Press, Boca Raton 1998, 208 pages, ISBN 1-57444-111-6
  19. TechOptimizer software
  20. Vladimir Petrov, Avraam Seredinski: Progress and Ideality. In: Jürgen Jantschgi (Ed.): TRIZ Future Conference 2005 , Leykam Buchverlag, Graz 2005, ISBN 3-7011-0057-8


  • G. Altschuller, A. Seljuzki: Wings for Ikarus - About the modern technology of invention. MIR Moscow publishing house and Urania publishing house, Moscow 1983, 292 pages
  • GS Altschuller: Inventing - Ways to Solve Technical Problems . VEB Verlag Technik, Berlin 1984. Limited reprint 1998, 280 pages, ISBN 3-00-002700-9
  • Rolf Herb, Thilo Herb, Veit Kohnhauser: TRIZ - The systematic path to innovation . Verlag Moderne Industrie, Landsberg / Lech 2000, 312 pages, ISBN 3-478-91980-0
  • Rolf Herb (eds.), John Terninko, Alla Zusman, Boris Zlotin: TRIZ - the way to an unrivaled successful product . Verlag Moderne Industrie, Landsberg / Lech 1998, 288 pages, ISBN 3-478-91920-7
  • Claudia Hentschel, Carsten Gundlach, Horst Thomas Nähler: TRIZ - systematic innovation . Hanser Verlag, Munich 2010, 128 pages, ISBN 978-3-446-42333-6 (offers a compact but clear first introduction)
  • Bernd Klein: TRIZ / TIPS - methodology of inventive problem solving , Munich 2007, ISBN 978-3-486-58083-9
  • Pavel Livotov, Vladimir Petrov: TRIZ innovation technology. Product development and problem solving. Manual. TriSolver 2002, Hannover, 302 pp., ISBN 3-935927-02-9 ; revised 4th edition, 2017.
  • Michael A. Orloff: Basics of the classic TRIZ , Springer Verlag, 03/2005, 367 pages, ISBN 3-540-24018-7
  • Dietmar Zobel: Systematic invention . expert verlag, Renningen 2004, ISBN 3-8169-2396-8
  • H. Teufelsdorfer, A. Conrad: Creative development and innovative problem solving with TRIZ / TIPS. Introduction to the methodology and its connection with QFD. Publicis MCD, 1998, 120 pages, ISBN 3-89578-103-7
  • Peter Schweizer: Implementing solutions systematically. Leading innovation projects and developing products vdf Hochschulverlag Zürich 2001, 430 pages, ISBN 3-7281-2763-9 (with an introduction to TRIZ)
  • VDI 4521. Inventive problem solving with TRIZ. Fundamentals, terms and definitions. Berlin 2016.
  • Karl Koltze, Valeri Souchkov: Systematic innovation - TRIZ application in product and process development. Hanser Verlag 2010, 333 pages, ISBN 978-3-446-42132-5

Web links

Commons : TRIZ  - collection of images, videos and audio files