This paper concerns the use of design thinking in practice-led doctoral design research. It examines methodological appropriateness for research through design. Much practice-led design research begins with the aim of improving knowledge and understanding for design practitioners involved in real-world problem-solving. However this can be compromised in both its applicability and/or relevance as the context of the practice or the articulation of the theory/practice relationship becomes esoteric to those other than design theorists. It is our observation, as supervisors and examiners of Design PhD students, that practice-led design researchers often get caught up in a research paradigm and process that reduces their project to a post-hoc rationalisation of the problem, the methodology and resulting knowledge; creating an output that alienates the intended primary audience. This paper examines methodological appropriateness for practice-led design research. It is based on a correlation of critical literature and reflection on several practice-led doctoral design projects. It considers the theoretical frameworks and research processes to support exploratory practice-led design research by expert designers. It argues that for this type of research the research question(s) and research design should co-evolve in order to generate new insight and understanding of future design directions; documenting this evolution forms a vital element of the research content.
|Publication status||Published - 2009|
|Event||8th International Conference of the European Academy Of Design - Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen|
Duration: 1 Jan 2009 → …
|Conference||8th International Conference of the European Academy Of Design|
|Period||1/01/09 → …|