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Design Science Journal
Papers

Lessons Learned and Future Challenges for Design Observatory Research

Lessons Learned and Future Challenges for Design Observatory Research

Year: 2009

Section: Design Theory and Research Methodology

Editor: Norell Bergendahl, M.; Grimheden, M.; Leifer, L.; Skogstad, P.; Lindemann, U.

Author: Törlind, Peter; Sonalkar, Neeraj; Bergström, Mattias; Blanco, Eric; Hicks, Ben; McAlpine, Hamish

Section: Design Theory and Research Methodology

Pages: 371-382

Abstract

Video observation has been used for ethnographic studies for decades and is becoming more popular in engineering design research. This paper presents some of the lessons learned of using design observation in research. The paper focuses on the design and usage of physical environments designed specifically for design team observation - Design Observatories (DO) . The paper argues that in the past DO focused on observation, whereas DO of the future will provide real time analysis and the possibility to intervene to improve the design activity. Five different types of studies are identified and categorized. Three different design observatories and the rationale for their design are described, as well as twelve design studies ranging from short experiments to long ethnographic studies in industry. Finally, the implications for design observatory research are presented - DO must support an iterative research approach, since design experiments are emergent and are not defined up front. There is a need for a more longitudinal capture of data and the emergence of robust coding schemes that enable machine coding needs to be supported.

Keywords: Design observation, Design observatory, video analysis

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ds conferenceICED09: 17th International Conference on Engineering Design

The Design Society and the Stanford Center for Design Research cordially invite you to participate in the International Conference on Engineering Design, ICED'09. The venue will be Stanford University’s verdant campus in the heart of Silicon Valley, a short 35 miles south of San Francisco, California. Research papers and case studies are solicited on any topic related to design thinking, theory, and practice, with a premium placed on evidence-based research. Topics and Themes include: *...

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Design Science Journal