Author ORCID Identifier

Frithjof E. Wegener: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8793-9042
Philip Cash: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6498-0237

Abstract

Design processes are at the heart of design research. Current design research at the micro- and macro-level has led to profound insights about designing. However, missing are design process research approaches that are able to theorize between (meso-level) and beyond levels of analysis. This fragmentation of process research and theory across levels hampers research synthesis and theory development. In this paper we illustrate the limitations of current design research methodologies to analyse and theorize process. Specifically, the issue lies in the challenge of analysing and theorizing the temporal embeddedness of data in the overall design process. We introduce a Process Theory agenda for future design process research focused on the meso-levels as the mediator of interactions between design processes across levels. As such, this paper contributes a novel characterisation of a critical challenge in design research, proposing process theory for addressing this.

Keywords:

design process; research methodology; process theory; conceptual model

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License

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Aug 11th, 12:00 AM

The Future of Design Process Research? Exploring Process Theory and Methodology

Design processes are at the heart of design research. Current design research at the micro- and macro-level has led to profound insights about designing. However, missing are design process research approaches that are able to theorize between (meso-level) and beyond levels of analysis. This fragmentation of process research and theory across levels hampers research synthesis and theory development. In this paper we illustrate the limitations of current design research methodologies to analyse and theorize process. Specifically, the issue lies in the challenge of analysing and theorizing the temporal embeddedness of data in the overall design process. We introduce a Process Theory agenda for future design process research focused on the meso-levels as the mediator of interactions between design processes across levels. As such, this paper contributes a novel characterisation of a critical challenge in design research, proposing process theory for addressing this.

 

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