The Emergent Role of the Social Designer

Moore, Anne-Marie; Beckett, Angharad E. and Holt, Raymond J. (2014). The Emergent Role of the Social Designer. In: Proceedings of the 19th DMI: Academic Design Management Conference: Design Management in an Era of Disruption, 2-4 Sep 2014, London, pp. 1971–1987.


This paper responds to the Academic Design Management Conference, Design Management Futures theme. It answers questions relating to the way in which we think about the future of Design Management, and the way in which Design Management may need to adapt to the changing nature of design and new management theories. This piece draws on the work of an interdisciplinary team of researchers from the fields of Engineering, Sociology and Graphic Design, and their experience in the areas of user-engagement, anti-oppressive education/pedagogy and inclusive design.
This position paper is a reflective piece that examines the value of designers, engineers and sociologists working together. It puts forward the question ‘What can designers and engineers learn from the emancipatory paradigm of the Social Scientist?’ Reflections from a UK-based team of undergraduate designers and engineers provide insight to their experience of engaging with the user through an inclusive design project. They cast light upon their experience of cross-faculty studies, interdisciplinary collaborations and both the challenges and benefits to working with different user groups. This paper concludes by examining the practical implications for Design Management, providing insights for Design Management education, research and practice.

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