Traversing the Swampy Lowlands: Analyzing Pragmatic Decision-Making During Design Research Projects through a Retrospective Case Study

Ivo Bril, Koen van Turnhout, Nick Degens, Joke Fleer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingContribution to conference proceedingAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Ask any design researcher whether their carefully made research plans always make it through a project intact and you will probably get a chuckle out of them. Yet, discussions on how we deal with changing our plans on the go and
how we mitigate the repercussions to our research goals are sparse. To explore these challenges and how we can discuss them, we conduct a retrospective case study by analyzing pragmatic decisions that were made during a design research project of the first author. In finding the right perspective for this analysis, we turn to Cockton’s meta-principles for interaction design and its corresponding four design choice categories. Our findings describe four key decision moments using Cockton’s constructs to help identify what considerations went into making the pragmatic decision. In the discussion we reflect upon what Cockton’s constructs bring to the discussion of pragmatic decision-making and introduce the concepts of path-dependency and saturation alongside reflective questions to give design researchers more structure in reasoning about their pragmatic decision-making.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNordiCHI '24: Proceedings of the 15th Nordic Conference on Human-Computer Interaction
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Number of pages23
Publication statusSubmitted - 2024

Keywords

  • design-oriented research
  • meta-methodology
  • design principles
  • decision making
  • human centered computing

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