Action Research and the Practice of Design
Team F Presenta,on by Ji-‐ha Kim and Arron Jackson
Crisis of conﬁdence in the professional. An unfortunate accident of historical ,ming...
Percep,on of the design process as a mys,cal leap towards a solu,on.
20th century design is described to have grown out of applied art tradi,ons, but with the propaganda eﬀorts in World War 2, diﬀerent and ra,onal methods for making design decisions were developed by designers coming from an engineering background to promote a “scien,ﬁc method” of design problem solving.
Modernist thinking perpetua,ng scien,ﬁc and engineering research models. Though there may be many ways to construc,ng personal knowledge, a “pluralis,c approach that recognizes these dimensions is now preferred to the former posi,vist paradigm that sought to prescribe a universal truth.”
Designers Problem solving by synthesis. Solu,on-‐focused strategy.
Scien&sts Problem solving by analysis. Problem focused strategy.
Problem/Research Analysis Synthesis Execu,on Produc,on Evalua,on
``The designer oXen telescopes a mass of fragmented bits of informa,on and then – usually aXer a period of incuba,on – invents a coherent and oXen elegant proposi,on that embodies all or most of the rag-‐bag of bits`` ``period of incuba&on`` right brained holis&c thinking SYNTHESIS designer thinking as research tool ``Without an imagina,ve insight into what data “might” mean and the variety of ways in which it “could” be interpreted, science would have made liWle progress in extending the body of knowledge.``
Ac,on Research A prac,cal research methodology that usually requires three condi,ons to be met.
1. Subject maWer normally is situated in a social prac,ce that needs to be changed. 2. It is a par,cipatory ac,vity where the researchers work in equitable collabora,on. 3. The project proceeds through a spiral of cycles of planning, ac,ng, observing, and reﬂec,ng in a systema,c and documented study. Research – analysis – synthesis -‐ evalua,on Plan – act – observe -‐ reﬂect
Ac,on research has both ac,on outcomes and research outcomes of varying intensity.
``Authen,c collabora,on in research is more than just a mul,disciplinary design team approach. The users of design should be genuine `collaborators,` and not merely co-‐opted for token comments in an illusion of collabora,on.``
“Ac,on research requires the research process to be made visible.” If a design is going to “change reality,” it inevitably requires considerable investment in ,me and money, and the public should have the means to understanding the development process.
Cri,cal (and self cri,cal) collabora,ve inquiry by Reﬂec,ve prac,,oners being Accountable and making the results of their inquiry made public Self-‐evalua,ng their prac,ce and engaged in Par,cipa,ve problem solving and con,nuing professional development
Data gathering by the par,cipants Par,cipa,on and power-‐sharing in decision-‐making Collabora,on as a cri,cal community Self-‐reﬂec,on, self-‐evalua,on, and self-‐management Learning progressively by doing and making (mistakes) in a “self-‐reﬂec,ve cycle”
Dr. Ortrun Zuber SkerriW
“Sharing experiences in the form of substan,ve discourse of this nature will help design to progress as a discipline ﬁeld” The fear of “giving away” to the compe,,on.
“Ac,on research methodology provides a ready-‐made scaﬀold for a systema,c research method that could be easily understood and adopted by designers in the transla,on of their professional prac,ce into acceptable academic and public discourse.” 8
Published on Oct 8, 2011
A Presentation on Action Research by byJi-‐ha Kim and Arron Jackson for Deborah Shackleton's SOCS 309 course