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Which clippings match 'Research For Design' keyword pg.1 of 1
17 APRIL 2015

A Guide to Practice Based Research

"Practice-based Research is an original investigation undertaken in order to gain new knowledge partly by means of practice and the outcomes of that practice. In a doctoral thesis, claims of originality and contribution to knowledge may be demonstrated through creative outcomes in the form of designs, music, digital media, performances and exhibitions. Whilst the significance and context of the cl aims are described in words, a full understanding can only be obtained with direct reference to the outcomes."

(Linda Candy, 2006, Creativity and Cognition Studios)


2006Creativity and Cognition Studios (CCS) • invention of artefacts • invention of ideas • invention of images • invention of performances • knowledge and understanding • knowledge is embodied in an artefact • Linda Candy • new or substantially improved insights • original investigationpractice-based researchresearch by or through designresearch for designresearch through designresearch through practicetheory building


Simon Perkins
24 FEBRUARY 2013

Theory construction problems in design research

"Until recently, the field of design was an adjunct to art and craft. With the transformation of design into an industrial discipline come responsibilities that the field of design studies has only recently begun to address.

This transformation means that design is becoming a generalizable discipline that may as readily be applied to processes, media interfaces or information artefacts as to tools, clothing, furniture or advertisements. To understand design as a discipline that can function within any of these frames means developing a general theory of design. This general theory should support application theories and operational programmes. Moving from a general theory of design to the task of solving problems involves a significantly different mode of conceptualization and explicit knowledge management than adapting the tacit knowledge of individual design experience.

So far, most design theories involve clinical situations or micro–level grounded theories developed through induction. This is necessary, but it is not sufficient for the kinds of progress we need.

In the social sciences, grounded theory has developed into a robust and sophisticated system for generating theory across levels. A 'grounded' theory is an inductive theory emerging or rising from the ground of direct, empirical experience. These theories ultimately lead to larger ranges of understanding, and the literature of grounded theory is rich in discussions of theory construction and theoretical sensitivity (Glaser 1978, 1992; Glaser and Strauss 1967; Strauss 1991; Strauss and Corbin 1990, 1994).

One of the deep problems in design research is the failure to engage in grounded theory, developing theory out of practice. Instead, many designers confuse practice with research. Rather than developing theory from practice through articulation and inductive inquiry, some designers mistakenly argue that practice is research. From this, they claim that practicebased research is itself a form of theory construction."

(Ken Friedman, 2008, pp.153–154)

Ken Friedman (2008). "Research into, by and for design." Journal of Visual Arts Practice Volume 7 Number 2. Intellect Ltd. Article. English Language. doi: 10.1386/jvap.7.2.153/1


2008 • Anselm Strauss • application theories • art and craft • Barney Glaser • Christopher Fraylingclinical researchclinical situationsconceptualisationdesign disciplinedesign fielddesign researchdesign studies • design theories • Donald Schon • empirical experience • empirical-analyticexplicit knowledge • general theory of design • generalisabilitygenerating theorygrounded theoryHerbert Read • individual design experience • inductive enquiryinductive reasoning • inductive theory • Journal of Visual Art Practice • Juliet Corbin • Ken FriedmanMichael Polanyi • micro-level grounded theories • Nigel Cross • pamphlet • Peter Bergerpractice-based research • research by design • research by or through designresearch for design • research into design • research through designsocial sciencestacit knowledge • theoretical sensitivity • theory building • theory construction • Thomas KuhnThomas Luckmann


Simon Perkins
08 FEBRUARY 2006

Research for, about or in, by or through, Design

"Christopher Frayling's category of 'research through design', although somewhat crystallised, helped to gain recognition for on going and future design research. Among many interpretation of Frayling's categories we mainly refer to Alain Findeli (2000) when observing that 'Research for design' describes what is known as 'R&D'; it has no scientific recognition (...), since there is usually no discourse attached to it, no intention of generalisability except technological, and no 'accumulative' effect in the theoretical realm (...). A lot – but not all – of what is sometimes called 'practice–based' or 'project–based research' belongs here (...). 'Research about or in design' covers academically recognised, published, and even funded research in the field of design (its objects, products, processes, values, theoretical and historiographical models, etc.), carried out by academics of the design or other disciplines, with the epistemological and methodological tools of the already established and respected academic disciplines, and as such foreign to design (...). 'Research by or through design' is research in the field of design carried out with the tools of design, i.e. mainly with its more original and specific feature: the project. Of course, other methodological tools should not be neglected (...). The main aim of the research should not be, of course, to carry out just another design project, but to use the design project as our lab, our terrain. Among the purposes of this type of research, one should find the contribution to a 'better' (in my words 'more enlightened') design practice, at short or long term. Our epistemological and methodological challenge is to devise an academically credible, rigorous, manageable, dependable, and teachable relationship between the research and the design project, i.e. between theory and practice. (...) [11]. At the same time, the growing awareness of the intrinsic strengths of design thinking within its own context and a growing acceptance of design on its own terms helped to recognise that design has its own distinct intellectual culture [12]."

(Silvia Pizzocaro, 2005)

1). Silvia Pizzocaro, 'Towards a Strategic Role for Doctoral Research in Design', Joining Forces – Design Research, Industries and a New Interface for Competitiveness – Helsinki Pre–congress conference – September 2005 – Media Centre Lume – UIAH


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