Research Libraries UK

Digital Shift Forum – Design From/With/By Data

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RLUK’s Digital Shift Forum brings together colleagues from across the information, research, cultural and heritage communities, and third and commercial sectors, to discuss the future of the digital shift in collections, services, and audiences.

The series aims to promote cross-sector discussion and debate, to enable knowledge exchange, and inspire collaborative endeavour across sectors and communities, for the benefit of RLUK members and the wider research and information management communities.

The Digital Shift Forum is open to all, and you do not need to belong to an RLUK member institution to attend or participate.

Design From/With/By Data – Professor Chris Speed FRSE, Chair of Design Informatics, University of Edinburgh

2 February, 2021, 14:00-15:00 (GMT)

The design community have used qualitative and quantitative data to inform the development of products, services and systems for many years. From market analytics to observational analysis, and questionnaires to design probes, designers understand implicitly the need to watch, listen and learn from the data that is gathered by prototypes before, during and after the design process. However, whilst the methods for gathering data have grown to reflect research through design approaches, there has been little classification of the kinds of data that we are encountering in an age of large digital data sets, nor to frame how we design alongside them.

The talk will reflect upon a framework for designers that was introduced in 2016 that reflected on methods of working with data, in order to anticipate its ability to transform design processes as its level of performativity increases. The framework aims to offer a means of organising both existing methods but also of anticipating emerging methods that recognise the increasing performative qualities of data.

The provocation of the talk is that by acknowledging the fast-moving nature of data-driven technologies, there are many challenging aspects of being a contemporary design researcher within the Digital Shift agenda, and we need new literacies (including the ablative framework) in order that we retain a digital literacy and social values.

Further details of Chris’ presentation are available within the registration page.

Professor Chris Speed FRSE is Chair of Design Informatics at the University of Edinburgh where he collaborates with a wide variety of partners to explore how design provides methods to adapt and create products and services within a networked society. He is especially favours transgressive design interventions, to help identify and promote the values we care about most, including coffee machines that order their own ethical supplies, hairdryers that ask you to wait for the right time to blow dry your hair, and apps for sham marriages. Chris co-directs the Institute for Design Informatics that is home to a combination of researchers working across the fields of design, social science, and data science, as well as the PhD, MA/MFA and MSc and Advanced MSc programmes. Chris has an established track record in directing large complex grants with industry partners, that apply methods to challenges in the creative industries, banking, international development and cultural heritage sectors.

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