Design versioning — Perspectives on situated design

talk – 15 min | Feb 6 – 11:00

How to design with a developmental mindset? We present a situated approach to design that weaves human development with product development to foster meaningful and embodied social transformations.

What does it mean to design with a developmental mindset? As the tools we use constrain and drive our activities, how can designers take into account and respect the diversity of people and situations? We believe that design should not only be about the production of efficient tools, but it should also be concerned by the meaning, the goals and the values of what we do with our tools. We propose a situated approach that aims to open collective dialogues “intra & inter sites” to guide both the design and the development of tools and the transformations of our activities, version after version.

Since 2013, we have iterated over different versions of a digital learning tool, do•doc, that promotes the sharing of learning experiences with documented digital narratives. Our design process led us to conduct action research with educators from different learning environments, both formal and informal (Elementary Schools, FabLabs, Universities, Innovation Labs,…). These “sites” incarnate very different perspectives on learning, although they share current challenges—especially regarding the development of new knowledge communities. So, the development of do.doc brought together a network of people with different learning practices. We will show how this iterative research process through design helped reveal and discuss the underlying goals and values of the learning activities within each situation but also fed a broader debate on learning and education.

We see a great potential in this situated design approach, as a way to foster collective reflective practices and reconfigurations of activities within the sites and inter-sites. This is an attempt to draw a third path where design is an investigation process that bridges situated human dynamics with the development of technical systems.

Pauline Gourlet

Pauline Gourlet
L'atelier des chercheurs

Louis Eveillard

Louis Eveillard
L'atelier des chercheurs

About the speakers

Pauline Gourlet

Pauline Gourlet

L'atelier des chercheurs

Interaction & graphic designer, researcher, and teacher, finishing a PhD in Design and Ergonomics at Université Paris 8. Co-founder of l’Atelier des Chercheurs with Louis Eveillard and Sarah Garcin.

My research focuses on the role design can play in the development of both people and organizations. Through storytelling and visual tools, I explore the way people collect traces of their activities and later reflect on them, both individually and collectively. I conduct participatory action research, using design as a way to interrogate human experiences.

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Louis Eveillard

Louis Eveillard

L'atelier des chercheurs
Freelance interaction & graphic designer in Paris. I specialise in webdesign, datavizualisation and crafting digital tools for various contexts with l’Atelier des Chercheurs. I also regularly host conferences and workshops on designing systems, building user interfaces or data physicalization. I teach webdesign and code to graphic design students as well.

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