The Value Engineering Approach (VE) is also based on Function (like systems approach), although more narrowly than a system perspective which spans the universe e.g., "galactic system" The basic VE formula is:
Vmax = required function/minimum cost (required function divided by minumun cost)
An extreme example of VE approach is a necktie clip. Think ! What would be a max value necktie clip ?
The VE approach requires knowledge of materials and manufacturing processes for making things, which Value Engineers have to research/cooperate with others with such knowledge.
As the USAF/Office of Aerospace Research Value Engineer, I was the focal point for VE and involved in actually doing VE on different projects. Without getting into a myriad of details, let me stress that the necktie clip is an illustration of the concept and not a "real world/marketable solution". The answer to max value necktie clip is a "paper clip".
Let's take our Systems Approach "coffee mug" example. Most people would probably think of a styrofoam throughaway coffee cup as a Vmax solution. However, most users (including me) wouldn't enjoy regularly drinking from such a cup. So I wouldn't buy such a cup for normal/enjoyable usage. My value engineered coffee cup is a solid cream cup with a comfortable handle and solid base which is re-usable ad infinitum.
What would be a Vmax solution to Cyberpeacefare's Systems Objective Function: "World Peace and Planet Survival ?