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      Establishing Criteria of Rigor and Relevance in Interaction Design Research


      Create10 - The interaction design conference (CREATE)

      Create10 - The interaction design conference

      30 June - 2 July 2010

      Rigor and relevance, Interaction design research, Design practice, Design Exploration, Design Studies

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          Interaction design research has rapidly evolved into a unique discipline embracing practicing professionals, design educators, and academic researchers. As with many evolving disciplines, attracting attention from a large number of people with different backgrounds, interests, and ways of seeing tends to cause ‘disciplinary anxiety’, which inevitably leads to the question of what constitutes ‘good research’. What is rigorous and relevant interaction design research? How do we recognize and evaluate it? In this paper, we argue that most current attempts at dealing with issues of rigor and relevance in interaction design research tend to be on loan from other disciplines, and tend to overlook, conceal, or knowingly exclude some of what makes interaction design research such a unique field. Our primary contribution is that what may be perceived as three different design research activities–design practice, design exploration, and design studies–have their own purposes, intended outcomes, and internal logic. Each form of research must thus be examined in its own right and the notions of rigor and relevance for each of them have to be based on a firm understanding of the particular purpose of each approach. We would argue that this is not done consistently in the field today, which leads to misunderstandings, confusion, and mistakes when interaction design research is reviewed, discussed, and assessed.

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          Author and article information

          June 2010
          June 2010
          : 1-6
          Interactive Institute Umeå

          Umeå University, Umeå, Sweden
          School of Informatics and Computing

          Indiana University at Bloomington, Indiana, USA
          © Daniel Fallman et al. Published by BCS Learning and Development Ltd. Create10 - The interaction design conference, Edinburgh Napier University, UK

          This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit

          Create10 - The interaction design conference
          Edinburgh Napier University, UK
          30 June - 2 July 2010
          Electronic Workshops in Computing (eWiC)
          Create10 - The interaction design conference
          Product Information: 1477-9358BCS Learning & Development
          Self URI (journal page):
          Electronic Workshops in Computing


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