"We differentiate research artifacts from design practice artifacts in two important ways. First, the intent going into the research is to produce knowledge for the research and practice communities, not to make a commercially viable product. To this end, we expect research projects that take this research through design approach will ignore or deemphasize perspectives in framing the problem, such as the detailed economics associated with manufacturability and distribution, the integration of the product into a product line, the effect of the product on a company’s identity, etc. In this way design researchers focus on making the right things, while design practitioners focus on making commercially successful things.
Second, research contributions should be artifacts that demonstrate significant invention. The contributions should be novel integrations of theory, technology, user need, and context; not just refinements of products that already exist in the research literature or commercial markets. The contribution must demonstrate a significant advance through the integration. This aspect of a design research contribution makes particular sense in the interaction design space of HCI. Meteoric technological advances in hardware and software drive an aggressive invention of novel products in HCI and interaction design domains that are not as aggressively experienced by other design domains. While product designers might find themselves redesigning office furniture to meet the changing needs of work, interaction designers more often find themselves tasked with inventing whole new product categories.
Our model of design research allows interaction design researchers to do what designers do best: to study the world and then to make things intended to affect change. Our model provides a new channel for the power of design thinking, desired by many disciplines, to be unleashed as in a research context. Design researchers can contribute from a position of strength, instead of aping the methods of other disciplines as a means of justifying their research contribution."
(John Zimmerman, Jodi Forlizzi, Shelley Evenson, p.500, 2007)
John Zimmerman, Jodi Forlizzi, and Shelley Evenson (2007). "Research through design as a method for interaction design research in HCI". In Proceedings of the SIGCHI conference on Human factors in computing systems (CHI '07). ACM, New York, NY, USA, 493-502. DOI=10.1145/1240624.1240704 http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/1240624.1240704
"In practical terms PRE is a process in which teachers, tutors, lecturers and other education professionals systematically enquire into their own institutional practices in order to produce assessable reports and artefacts which are submitted for academic credits leading to the awarding of degrees, certificates and diplomas of universities, colleges and professional associations."
(Louis Murray and Brenda Lawrence, 2000, p.10)
Murray, L., & Lawrence, B. (2000). Practitioner-based enquiry: Principles for postgraduate research. London: Falmer Press.
"Shadowing is an ethnographic technique to understand a person's real-time interactions with products, services or process and their shifting contexts and needs over the course of a day. Shadowing often focuses on particular events or tasks participants are willing to share. Talk Aloud and closure interviews are used to clarify questions.
Self-observations / Diaries is a method used when it is difficult or impossible to directly access a certain place (like people's homes) or access is too time consuming. It consists of asking people to provide self-observations about their activities in the form of log reports or diaries, for example. Although this method involves the subjectivity of the participants in the data collected, it can be valuable to get a glimpse of life through the eyes of the people that are being studied."
"This article defines and describes the rich variety of research designs found in librarianship and informatics practice. Familiarity with the range of methods and the ability to make distinctions between those specific methods can enable authors to label their research reports correctly. The author has compiled an inventory of methods from a variety of disciplines, but with attention to the relevant applications of a methodology to the field of librarianship. Each entry in the inventory includes a definition and description for the particular research method. Some entries include references to resource material and examples."
(Jonathan D. Eldredge, 2004, Journal of the Medical Library Association)
"The NOW:THEN method aims to establish a basis for coordination of experience with practical artistic research and to share innovative ideas, technical skills and ressources. This is achieved by articulating needs and demands for new standards and tools through the development of actual experimental work in socalled 'Test rooms' or 'Media Labs'.
The principle is simple. To gain some actual practical experience it is important to produce artistic prototypes with the technology that is available NOW. These artistic prototypes are not meant for an audience or for a commercial market - they are research prototypes helping to articulate what you want to achieve in the final production THEN."
(Practice driven Research in Art and Media)