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Why research-oriented design isn't design-oriented research

on the tensions between design and research in an implicit design discipline

Daniel Fallman

pp. 193-200


Human–computer interaction (HCI) is the discipline concerned with the design, evaluation, and implementation of interactive computing systems. Unlike many empirical sciences, HCI researchers do not typically solely study existing technologies, styles of interaction, or interface solutions. On the contrary, one of the core activities in contemporary HCI is to design new technologies – in the form of software and hardware prototypes – that act as vehicles through which HCI researchers' ideas materialize and take on concrete form. Despite this situation, there is a very modest discussion in the discipline on the role of design as an activity in the research process; whether or not HCI could in fact be better understood as a design discipline than as an empirical science; and if, and if so how, the design element in HCI goes with its empirical claims.

Publication details

Published in:

(2007) Design research from Northern Europe II. Knowledge, Technology & Policy 20 (3).

Seiten: 193-200

DOI: 10.1007/s12130-007-9022-8


Fallman Daniel (2007) „Why research-oriented design isn't design-oriented research: on the tensions between design and research in an implicit design discipline“. Knowledge, Technology & Policy 20 (3), 193–200.