In a distributed product realization environment, new paradigms and accompanying software systems are necessary to support the collaborative work of geographically dispersed engineering teams from different disciplines who have different knowledge, experience, tools and resources. To verify the concept of collaboration by separation, we propose a generic information communication medium to enable knowledge representation and exchange between engineering teams, a digital interface. Across digital interfaces, each engineering team maintains its own perspective towards the product realization problem, and each controls a subset of design variables and seeks to maximize its own payoff function subject to individual constraints. Hence, we postulate the use of principles from game theory to model the relationships between engineering teams and facilitate collaborative decision making without causing unnecessary information exchange or iteration across digital interfaces. A product design and manufacturing scenario is introduced to demonstrate the efﬁcacy of using game theory to maintain a clean interface between design and manufacturing teams.