Design and Anthropology

Design and Anthropology LOOK INSIDE
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  • Edited by Wendy Gunn, University of Southern Denmark and Jared Donovan, Queensland University of Technology, Australia
  • Series: Anthropological Studies of Creativity and Perception
  • Design and Anthropology challenges conventional thinking regarding the nature of design and creativity, in a way that acknowledges the improvisatory skills and perceptual acuity of people. Combining theoretical investigations and documentation of practice based experiments, it addresses methodological questions concerning the re-conceptualisation of the relation between design and use from both theoretical and practice-based positions.

    Concerned with what it means to draw 'users' into processes of designing and producing this book emphasises the creativity of design and the emergence of objects in social situations and collaborative endeavours.

    Organised around the themes of perception and the user-producer, skilled practices of designing and using, and the relation between people and things, the book contains the latest work of researchers from academia and industry, to enhance our understanding of ethnographic practice and develop a research agenda for the emergent field of design anthropology.

    Drawing together work from anthropologists, philosophers, designers, engineers, scholars of innovation and theatre practitioners, Design and Anthropology will appeal to anthropologists and to those working in the fields of design and innovation, and the philosophy of technology and engineering.
  • Contents: Preface; Design anthropology: an introduction, Wendy Gunn and Jared Donovan; Part I Using and Producing: Introduction: the perception of the user-producer, Tim Ingold; The patient as skilled practitioner, Kyle Kilbourn; Hearing poorly with skill, Dennis Day; Gliding effortlessly through life? Surfaces and friction, Griet Scheldeman; An institutional view of user improvisation and design, Max Rolfstam and Jacob Buur. Part II Designing and Using: Introduction: defining moments, Johan Redström; The time it takes to make: design and use in architecture and archaeology, Lesley McFadyen; Moving from objects to possibilities, Jared Donovan and Wendy Gunn; Emergence of user identity in social interaction, Henry Larsen and Claus Have; The role of supply chains in product design, Benedicte Brøgger. Part III People and Things: Introduction: humanity in design, Peter-Paul Verbeek; Anthropological fieldwork and designing potentials, Mette Kjærsgaard and Ton Otto; Designing behaviour, Nynke Tromp and Paul Hekkert; Emergent artefacts of ethnography and processual engagements of design, Jamie Wallace; Theories and figures of technical mediation, Steven Dorrestijn. Epilogue: Utopian things, Pelle Ehn; Index.
  • About the Editor: Wendy Gunn is Associate Professor of Design Anthropology at the University of Southern Denmark.

    Jared Donovan is Lecturer in Interaction Design at Queensland University of Technology, Australia.
  • Reviews: ‘The book is innovatory, ambitious and important. It asks a radical question: “What methodological transformations in design practices are necessary to build better relations between designing and using?”. In the text distinctions between design, production and use, between perception, creativity and skill, are questioned, while anthropology, engineering, management, archaeology, philosophy, theatre and communication studies are challenged to find a common language of engagement. “Design anthropology” is a burgeoning field and this book is a significant development.’
    Nigel Rapport, University of St Andrews, UK

    ‘How to think about design? This is one of the key challenges of our future-obsessed times and this book is a provocative contribution to the debate. Focusing on the concrete and the mundane whilst sharpening the conceptual tools for understanding sociotechnical change, its essays thoroughly complicate the popular but misleading notion that design equals experts solving given problems.’
    Eeva Berglund, author of Knowing Nature, Knowing Science and Legacies of Empire and Spatial Divides

    ' … this book to be of great importance because it speaks about previously unwritten aspects on how design can be understood and used in our everyday lives.'
    Qualitative Research