Abstract

The idea for this article was noticed by the authors during analysis of interview materials collected from 14 professionals working with packaging. The professionals frequently touched themes of creative and implicit activities needed to accomplish design projects. The purpose of this article is to open up discussion about implicit elements in packaging design expressed in verbal form. Drawing on discussions about tacit knowledge (Polanyi, 1974; 2009), reflective practice and practitioner (Schön, 1983; 1995), wicked problems (Rittel & Webber, 1973), and designerly ways of knowing (Cross, 2006) the phenomenon of implicit elements in packaging design is examined. The materials are approached with a case study approach. “Casing” is built around two research themes: how the professionals describe implicit activities typical for packaging design, and what are the characteristics of these implicit practices spontaneously brought up in the interviews. Three implicit elements were constructed inductively across the interviews. These are 1.) verbal descriptions of interpretation and understanding of a design task, 2.) role of creativity, intuition and instincts when design activities are verbalised, and 3.) meaning of making and experience in design practice. Although, the research design is solely explorative and based on interviews, discussions about implicit phenomena in design are brought forward in the discussion chapter.

Keywords:

Case study; Professional interviews; Packaging design; Packaging; Tacit knowledge; Qualitative research

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Jun 16th, 12:00 AM

Verbalising the Silent? Professionals’ Framing of Implicit in Packaging Design

The idea for this article was noticed by the authors during analysis of interview materials collected from 14 professionals working with packaging. The professionals frequently touched themes of creative and implicit activities needed to accomplish design projects. The purpose of this article is to open up discussion about implicit elements in packaging design expressed in verbal form. Drawing on discussions about tacit knowledge (Polanyi, 1974; 2009), reflective practice and practitioner (Schön, 1983; 1995), wicked problems (Rittel & Webber, 1973), and designerly ways of knowing (Cross, 2006) the phenomenon of implicit elements in packaging design is examined. The materials are approached with a case study approach. “Casing” is built around two research themes: how the professionals describe implicit activities typical for packaging design, and what are the characteristics of these implicit practices spontaneously brought up in the interviews. Three implicit elements were constructed inductively across the interviews. These are 1.) verbal descriptions of interpretation and understanding of a design task, 2.) role of creativity, intuition and instincts when design activities are verbalised, and 3.) meaning of making and experience in design practice. Although, the research design is solely explorative and based on interviews, discussions about implicit phenomena in design are brought forward in the discussion chapter.

 

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