Abstract

The concept of design research is evolving through the literature, on-line discussions, and conferences. They revolve around defining what research is and where it belongs in design education and practice. This paper provides a framework for understanding the approaches to design research that builds upon existing overviews of the field provided by Bruce Archer, Richard Buchanan, Nigel Cross, Christopher Frayling, and Ken Friedman, among others. It begins with a brief history of design research to provide a foundation for understanding that research has been an integral part of the field of design since the early twentieth century. It then discusses the difference between clinical, applied, and basic research, providing an overview of the variety of approaches in each area. It is intended to serve as a guide to the discussion and provide a map of the literature. It is not intended as a detailed description or evaluation of the approaches or to serve as a vehicle for learning the methods, techniques, or theories of design research.

Keywords:

Design Research, Applied Research Through Design, Clinical Research For Design, Basic Research About Design

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Jul 7th, 12:00 AM

The Complex Field of Research: for Design, through Design, and about Design

The concept of design research is evolving through the literature, on-line discussions, and conferences. They revolve around defining what research is and where it belongs in design education and practice. This paper provides a framework for understanding the approaches to design research that builds upon existing overviews of the field provided by Bruce Archer, Richard Buchanan, Nigel Cross, Christopher Frayling, and Ken Friedman, among others. It begins with a brief history of design research to provide a foundation for understanding that research has been an integral part of the field of design since the early twentieth century. It then discusses the difference between clinical, applied, and basic research, providing an overview of the variety of approaches in each area. It is intended to serve as a guide to the discussion and provide a map of the literature. It is not intended as a detailed description or evaluation of the approaches or to serve as a vehicle for learning the methods, techniques, or theories of design research.

 

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