Design Research Society

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DRS 50th Anniversary Grants

As part of the Design Research Society 50th Anniversary Celebrations, we want to support research which furthers our understanding of the origins of design research, as well as the role and contribution the DRS has played in its development. We are also interested in thought-provoking pieces which recognise the past and anticipate the future of the field, to stimulate debate and discussion at the 2016 DRS conference.

Up to four proposals of GBP 1,000 will be awarded. The application form provides further details about the criteria for the grants and information about the reviewing process  (download forms here). The deadline for submission is Friday 31st July 2015.


DRS2016 Detailed Call for Participation

DRS2016 Banner


DRS2016 invites new and challenging paper submissions from any area or discipline of design research.  We embrace research looking at and using design in the widest possible sense with interdisciplinary work and work responding to the conference themes particularly encouraged.


(1) Future-Focused Thinking:

Papers, case studies, or designs that anticipate developments in one or more of the three areas of Design, Research and Society.

(2) Papers critically engaging with our key conference questions:

> How can design research help frame and address the societal problems that face us?
> How can design research be a creative and active force for rethinking ideas about design?
> How can design research shape our lives in more responsible, meaningful, and open ways?

(3) 50 Years of Design Research:

Papers looking critically at key contributors and contributions over the past 50 years of Design Research.


Design4Health 2015

Synergies of Practice : 3rd European Conference on Design4Health

Sheffield Hallam University, Sheffield, UK  13-16 July 2015

D4H logoDesign4Health is a biennial conference that brings together designers and creative practitioners with researchers, clinicians, policy makers and users to discuss, disseminate and test their approaches and methods. Design Research Society members are eligible for a discounted fee.

Our events provide an opportunity to reflect on how the disciplines of design and health might develop new ways of thinking and working, and how we might impact positively and sustainably on the social, economic and cultural factors within our communities and beyond.


New DRS Fellow

Professor Heylighen

We are pleased to announce the election of a new DRS Fellow: Professor Ann Heylighen

Ann is research professor at the Research[x]Design group of the Architecture Department of KU Leuven, Belgium.

Conferment of the title of Fellow of the Design Research Society acknowledges an established record of achievement in design research, and attainment of peer recognition as a researcher of professional standing and competence.

Members of DRS can apply for election to Fellow; see 'Becoming a DRS Fellow' in the members menu item on the left.


DRS Student Research Bursaries 2013

The importance of collaboration between designers and "users" was a major theme of two of the research projects supported by DRS Student Research Bursary Awards for 2013/14. The value of design for practical products for low-income communities, and design training for traditional artisans were the subject of the other two successful Student Bursary Awards for the year.

Read the reports of all four Bursary recipients - Sarah Rhodes of Central St Martins School of Art, Laura Piscicelli of Nottingham Trent University, Deny Willy Junaidy of Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (JAIST) and Timothy Whitehead of Loughborough University.


About DRS

The Design Research Society is a multi-disciplinary learned society for the design research community worldwide.The DRS was founded in 1966 and facilitates an international design research network in around 40 countries.
Read the Welcome message from the President of the Design Research Society, Professor Nigel Cross.
DRS is a founder member of the International Association of Societies of Design Research (IASDR).


DRS joins forces with Cumulus to promote design research


Following the success of the 1st International Symposium for Design Education Researchers in Paris in 2011, the DRS has signed a collaborative agreement with Cumulus. DRS Chair, Seymour Roworth-Stokes and Luisa Collina, Cumulus Vice-President, signed the agreement at the opening of the recent DRS/Cumulus  ‘Design Learning for Tomorrow’ Conference held on 14-17 May 2013 in Oslo, Norway.

Cumulus is the International Association of Universities and Colleges of Art, Design and Media. Founded in 1990 it has over 180 member institutions from 46 countries.

The agreement aims to support the development of joint events and activities to further design education research between the two organisations.

Pictured in the photograph are (left to right), Seymour Roworth-Stokes (DRS Chair), Petter Øyan (Dean, Oslo and Akershus University College of Applied Sciences – hosts for the conference), Liv Merete Nielsen (joint Conference Chair) and Luisa Collina (Cumulus Vice-President)


DRS AGM & Symposium 13 July 2015 Sheffield

AGM2015You are warmly invited to the Design Research Society’s 2015 symposium hosted by Sheffield Hallam University UK. This year the symposium theme is Working with different sectors and value systems: growth, application and analysis. We are fortunate to have secured three prominent design researchers to address this theme.

Professor Sue Walker will talk about design research doctoral training for the design researcher at the AHRC-funded Design Star Doctoral Training Centre. Professor Paul Chamberlain will discuss design research in the context of health and well-being through projects undertaken at Lab4Living in the Art and Design Research Centre at Sheffield Hallam University. Professor Linda Candy the co-editor of the books Interactive Experience in the Digital Age: Evaluating New Art Practice and Interacting: Art, Research and the Creative Practitioner will discuss evaluation in research and practice.


DRS 50th Anniversary

Nominations for DRS Lifetime Achievement Award

As part of the 50th Anniversary Celebrations for DRS, we want to recognise the outstanding contribution of individuals to design research.  We are inviting nominations from DRS members. We are looking for people who have demonstrated an outstanding contribution to effect significant change in the development of design research, coupled with the determination to pursue their vision successfully over a working lifetime. The Award is normally made to persons who have also had an active relationship with the Society.


DRS Membership

The Design Research Society: A Growing Worldwide Community

A report from Peter Lloyd, DRS Membership Secretary

Membership reportThe membership of the Design Research Society is vital to the ongoing discussions and debates that help form and promote the field of Design Research.  Through conferences, special interest groups, mail lists, the newsletter and the society’s journal, Design Studies, our aim is to further the discipline of design research.  As membership secretary, it is my pleasure to report that the DRS recently achieved a small landmark.  We now have over 750 members worldwide. The membership has grown considerably in recent years as the result of a number of initiatives that include: offering membership as part of the biannual DRS conference registration fee, introducing a special rate for research students, operating a DRS fellowship scheme, and offering research student bursaries.  This has been a combined and sustained effort by the DRS Council, the governing body of the society, and we are proud of what we have achieved together.


IASDR 2015

IASDR 2015

IASDR Congress 2015 Brisbane, Australia  2-5 November

Deadline for full-paper submission now 20 April 2015.

A global forum for presentation and discussion of the INTERPLAY of design research and applications across all domains of design, science, technology and arts. This continual INTERPLAY provides opportunities to explore interaction between cross-disciplinary knowledge and various design research approaches. IASDR 2015 aims to establish trans-disciplinary research platforms across diverse domains to foster new research and education opportunities and stimulate innovation. Visit the conference website for more information.


Design Studies Award

We are pleased to announce the winner of the 2014 Design Studies Award, for the best paper published in the journal. The award is to be made to Janet Kelly (University of Southern Denmark) and Ben Matthews (University of Queensland, Australia) for their paper Displacing use: Exploring alternative relationships in a human-centred design process, published in Vol. 35, No. 4, pp 353-373.

A 'Best Paper Collection 2014' Virtual Special Issue of Design Studies containing the winning paper and the five other shortlisted papers is available for free viewing on the journal website:



DRS Student Research Bursaries

The DRS Student Research Bursary Scheme offers grants of up to 500 GBP to student members of the society. The purpose of the scheme is to help research students progress towards a publication in the design research field. 2500 GBP is available for the scheme in each calendar year.


DRS Council Elections 2015 - VOTE NOW!

Voting is now open for the election of new DRS Council members

Call for Papers: Participatory Design and the Humanist Landscape

Position Statements @ UBICOMP 2015

Workshop on Participatory Design and the Humanist Landscape

Osaka, Japan - September 7-8, 2015

Submissions due: 19 June 2015

WORKSHOP GOALS  - This workshop (held in conjunction with the UBICOMP 2015: The 2015 ACM International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing and ISCW 2015: The 18th International Symposium on Wearable Computers) will bring together researchers and practitioners to reflect on the use of participatory design methods, especially in the context of design for wellbeing.

Swiss Design Network Symposium

Unfrozen – 1st Design Research Winter Summit

After three years in hibernation, the Swiss Design Network invites you to Unfrozen, the 9th SDN Symposium and the first SDN Design Research Winter Summit – January, 28-31 2016.

Society for Social Studies of Science Conference

The 4S 2015 Conference will be held in Denver, Colorado, USA from 11-14 November. Calls for papers are now open. Further information can be found at

Provocative Plastics - Call for Papers

Plastics are pervasive. They are now used in manufacturing more than any other material group and have thus shaped the modern world.  They are also widely used as a creative medium. Nonetheless, they are controversial:  for some they are beautiful and adaptive; for others unauthentic and destructive.

Learn x Design

The 3rd International Conference for Design Education Researchers: Learn X Design

June 28 - July 1, 2015 Chicago, IL, USA

Hosted by the School of the Art Institute of Chicago SAIC