• DRS Administrator posted an article
    Call to Host Learn X Design 2021, the DRS Pedagogy SIG Conference see more

    Call to Host Learn X Design 2021

    The Design Research Society Pedagogy Special Interest Group (PedSIG) invites proposals to host the next PedSIG biennial conference Learn X Design 2021For an application pack and guidance on making a proposal, please email the PedSIG Convenor Derek Jones ( 

    +++UPDATED+++ The updated deadline for proposals is 12:00 noon BST on 14 November 2019.

    The PedSIG Convening Group will review proposals and schedule interviews (if required) by late November. A final decision will be announced in early December.

    Above: Photo at the closing of Learn X Design 2019

    PedSIG is the largest SIG in the DRS and includes members from institutions around the world. The SIG has held biannual conferences since 2011. The 2019 conference took place in Ankara and welcomed over 150 delegates from 81 institutions and 31 countries. Read more about the DRS Pedagogy SIG hereFurther information on past conferences is available in the application pack.

    Contact Derek Jones ( with any further questions.

  • Isabel Prochner posted an article
    GHSig explores and promotes health design research across the world see more

    Introducing the Global Health SIG

    We’re thrilled to announce a new DRS Special Interest Group (SIG) — Global Health SIG (GHSig)The group will explore and promote health design research across the world. It’s convened by Emmanuel Tsekleves and Fatima Ghani, and includes organising committee members Claudia de Souza Libanio, Yonette Thomas, Ming Cheung, Charles Ebikeme and Pablo HermansenHere’s what Tsekleves had to say about the new group.


    What inspired the GHSig?

    We came together to tackle health challenges across the world. The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals are a major inspiration for our work.

    Are there global collaborations within the GHSig team?

    Absolutely! Our goal is to engage health and design researchers from the Global South and foster research collaborations between DRS members across the world.

    What’s the expertise of the organising team?

    We’re a group of academics, researchers and professionals from across all continents. We share a passion and interest for global health and design.

    What research activities are you planning?

    Lots of things — this includes local events, capacity-building workshops and publishing global health case studies. Our first event will take place in South East Asia in 2020.

    How can DRS members get involved?

    You can read about our mission on the Global Health SIG page and contact me to join. We’re looking forward to meeting other DRS members working in this field!


    The DRS has 11 SIGs including the new Global Health SIG. See the full list here. Members can join a SIG or start a new SIG by making a proposal to DRS Council.

  • Isabel Prochner posted an article
    The latest insights in design for wellbeing education, with a special focus on ethics see more

    Conference Report: DRS SIGWELL Conference 2019

    In April 2019, the DRS Special Interest Group 'Design for Wellbeing, Happiness and Health' (SIGWELL) organised a one-day conference on Design for Wellbeing Education at the TUDelft Teaching Lab. The conference explored the latest insights in design for wellbeing education, with a special focus on ethics. It had about 70 attendees - a nice group for our first renewed SIGWELL event! We used different presentation formats to inspire the audience. This included keynote presentations, workshops and a series of short presentations.



    After opening words by SIGWELL Chair Ann Petermans, the day started with a keynote lecture by Prof. Dr. Peter-Paul Verbeek titled ‘Designing Wellbeing: Responsible Design and Value Change’. Next, Prof. Dr. Pieter Desmet and Prof. Dr. Marc Hassenzahl led a workshop on tools and methods for design for wellbeing, and Jet Gispen led a workshop on ethical reflections toward design for wellbeing. After the workshops, Dr. Mieke van der Bijl-Brouwer gave an informative talk entitled ‘A flourishing University – Designing Systematically for Academic Wellbeing.’ She stressed that we need to develop a better understanding of creative methods and practices to address today’s complex societal challenges.

    After lunch, we had short presentations with five contributors: Armin Nagel discussed his Happy Waiting project, Stefan Persaud talked about education for happiness, Dr. Mathieu Gielen spoke about co-design with kids, Pelin Esnaf examined empathy as a design skill, and Chiel van der Linden discussed 'the holy grail' of worldwide wellbeing. The day ended with a keynote presentation by Andrew James, assistant principal at Mount Waverley North Primary School in Melbourne, Australia. He explained how positive design and principles from positive psychology were explored and applied in his school with children aged 10-12.

    Although the conference is over, we're looking forward to some great upcoming events. Many SIGWELL members have contributed to an upcoming design for wellbeing book with Routledge. And, of course, we hope to be present at DRS 2020!



    Ann Petermans, SIGWELL Chair

  • Isabel Prochner posted an article
    Overview of the DRS InclusiveSIG symposium at Brunel University London see more

    Conference Report: DRS InclusiveSIG Symposium 2019

    In June 2019, the DRS Special Interest Group 'Inclusive Design Research' (InclusiveSIG) organised a half-day symposium on inclusive design and making at Brunel University London. The event was hosted by Dr. Busayawan lam and Dr. Youngok Choi from Brunel University. It had about 30 attendees from the UK, China and Turkey.

    The symposium included presentations from local and international inclusive design researchers. The image above shows the speakers and symposium hosts. InclusiveSIG Convenor Prof. Hua Dong from Loughborough University spoke about the historic evolution of inclusive design. She also introduced a new book Inclusive Design: Chinese Archive (Tongji University Press, 2019), which addresses the 6Ps of inclusive design research: principles, processes, projects, pedagogy, people and publications.

    Above: Photo from the inclusive design symposium in London

    From Brunel University, Dr. Eujin Pei introduced disruptive ideas on additive manufacturing for inclusive design and Dr. Vanja Garaj spoke about a newly funded project on inclusive design of immersive reality. Dr. Christopher McGinley from the Royal College of Art presented recent case studies in the field. Finally, Dr. Abdusselam Selami Cifter from Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University gave a superb talk on a web-based platform that promotes accessibility in design.

    As a whole, the symposium highlighted current thinking on inclusive design research and practice in China, Turkey and the UK. Applications of new technology and community collaboration emerged as important topics. To follow-up, the DRS InclusiveSIG is planning another symposium at Loughborough University in October.



    Hua Dong, InclusiveSIG Convenor

  • DRS Administrator posted an article
    Would you like the opportunity to take on the leadership of PedSIG or Sustainability SIG? see more

    Call for DRS Pedagogy SIG and Sustainability SIG leads

    Would you like the opportunity to take on the leadership of PedSIG or Sustainability SIG? Last year the convenors of these two SIGs stepped down and we have had acting SIG leads in the interim period. DRS members are invited to nominate themselves with a convening group to lead PeDSIG (Design Pedagogy SIG) and SustainabilitySIG (Sustainable Design SIG).

    The DRS  Special Interest Groups (SIGs) are a vital part of the Society, bringing together communities of design researchers with a common interest in a particular area of design research. SIGs organise conferences and events to create opportunities for discussion around the world. The last two International DRS conferences have hosted themed tracks by both Sustainability and Design Pedagogy SIGs. The Design PedSIG also organises the biennial LearnXdesign conference series. Each SIG is led by a Convenor and supported by an organising group.

    What to do next

    If you are interested in either leading PedSIG or Sustainability SIG, please complete the application form and send to by April 1, 2019.

    The applications will be reviewed by the DRS International Advisory council, and feedback will be given as required to refine the proposals. The confirmation of new SIG convenors will be subject to approval by the DRS International Advisory Council.

    For further information please contact the DRS Administrator Linda Anderson

  • Isabel Prochner posted an article
    Radical, liberatory, intercultural and pluralistic conversations about design see more

    Introducing the Pluriversal Design SIG

    We’re thrilled to announce a new DRS Special Interest Group (SIG) — Pluriversal Design (PluriSIG). The group promotes radical, liberatory, intercultural and pluralistic conversations about design. PluriSIG is convened by Lesley-Ann Noel and Renata M. Leitao, and includes organising committee members Tanveer Ahmed, Xaviera Sanchez de la Barquera Estrada and Nicholas Baroncelli Torretta. 

    Read more about this group and their mission on the PluriSIG page, and contact the convenors to get involved!

    The group has already initiated a discussion on the meaning of Pluriversal Design. Noel and Leitao have also announced upcoming projects for the group:

    • PluriSIG Book Club
      • Weekly group readings of relevance to the SIG, followed by discussions on the SIG discussion pageThe first book is Design for the Pluriverse by Arturo Escobar. Other authors on the reading list include Mario Blaser, Isabelle Stengers and Boaventura de Souza Santos.
    • Decolonizing Design Reference Lists
      • This project will co-create design reference lists including authors from a variety of cultures and countries.
    • Pluriversal Design Resource Library
      • This project aims to collect and share resources that promote pluriversality, such as anti-oppression tool-kits, guidelines for community engagement, anti-design saviorism toolkits etc.
    • Discussions and Interviews
      • Vimeo channel with curated interviews about design practices, epistemologies and design research methods that challenge concepts of modernity and development, and highlight the work of design researchers from outside Europe and North America.