Research Journal from L'École de design Nantes Atlantique

30 July 2011   Interviews   virtual reality

“Tools that are designed to make intelligible something alive, the life of the network.” Interview of Hugues AUBIN, ICT Project Manager, City of Rennes (France)

Hughes Aubin is an tireless digital innovator, observing the impact of digital technologies on the society for years now. He mentored the project Identiscoop developed by Edouard Durand as final thesis work, a mobile application for a better control over one’s online digital identity. Hughes shares his reflection and experience, about extimacy or the subtle frontiers between what we hide, transform or exhibit from ourselves while being online…

Interview made by Grégoire Cliquet, course leader for the Virtual Reality Master’s program and head of the READi Design Lab, in october 2010.

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Tags: Interviews · virtual reality

23 April 2011   Publications

CADI #2 “Co-Creation” is out

How is it that a project-based activity resembling more a practice than a science and founded on empirical case studies manages to generate knowledge? How can research in design and research efforts on design conducted by scholars in other disciplines enrich each other? The current issue of CADI, our research journal, settles into the continuity of these reflections via three contributions pertaining to the topic of crossdisciplining.

CADI #2 Co creation issue

Three complementary approaches from theory to practice… and vice versa

Jocelyne Le Bœuf*, Design Historian, sheds light on her specialty by referencing the major thought movements of which hers has become a part over history. She also addresses the current multidisciplinary research trends, and delves deeper into the role that design history plays not only in understanding our material environment, but also in designer practices.

Gilles Rougon, Design Manager at Électricité de France (EDF), elaborates upon design transversality within a company where the primary product is immaterial.

Eloi Le Mouël, Sociologist within the design department of the RATP (Paris City Transit Authority), underlines during an interview the similarities and differences between an anthropological approach with regard to “mobility flows” and the design project practice from his standpoint as a researcher in the field of social science.

*J. Le Bœuf is also Director of Studies at L’École de design Nantes Atlantique

The last printed edition… for a better visibility online

This issue will be a crucial step in the history of our research journal: it will be the last printed edition. From now on, essays, articles and interviews will be available online on this blog, with a fully bilingual content.

Read CADI Research Journal #2 on Scribd or download CADI in PDF format from our main corporate website.

Graphic design & layout: Audrey Templier & Yves Mestrallet for éditions MeMo

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Tags: Publications

30 November 2010   Interviews   mutations of the built environment

“Design is an integral part of our everyday” – An interview with Pascal Gentil from the Innovathèque

Pascal Gentil, Head of the Technical Department at the Innovathèque – a French resource center for innovative materials – is an expert in innovative materials. He supervised the éKosse project devised by Caroline Saier, Master’s student in the Mutations of the Built Environment Program. Catherine Bouvard, Curriculum Course Leader, asked Pascal Gentil about the activities offered at the Innovathèque, current issues involving materials and the interaction between this field and design.

Pascal Gentil, Head of the Technical Department at the Innovathèque

Pascal Gentil, Head of the Technical Department at the Innovathèque

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Tags: Interviews · mutations of the built environment

12 April 2010   Billets

Design & Research

In October 2009 Christian Guellerin, Managing Director of L’École de design spoke at the symposium organized by the International Association of Societies of Design Research in Seoul. Upon his return he brings to the fore the dos and don’ts of research in design and what it must do to grow into a true scientific discipline

I have recently given a lecture at the symposium organized by the IASDR – “International Association of Societies of Design Research” 2009* – a research-oriented conference presenting the work of a large number of researchers and universities from all over the world. Many vibrant debates took place and much knowledge was produced during this wide-scoped event.

However I was puzzled by such a profusion of information about “research” and “design”, two terms many of us are striving to bring closer.
In doing so we must be wary not to bite our own tail like business schools, who call “marketing research” quantitative or qualitative studies often limited to statistic charts interpreted in a not-so-scientific manner that lacks the method and depth of sociological research. Why naming “marketing research” activities that are no more and no less than the very practice of “marketing”?

Why naming “design research” all reflections about creation and innovation?

Can design be recognized as a full-fledged scientific discipline?

Design is but an emerging discipline that is not very visible yet in the field of research. Some take advantage of this state of things to engage in studies pertaining to sociology, psychology, educational theory or hard sciences and claim they are doing “design research.” To me this working method is irrelevant and will not help design be accepted as a research discipline.

Along the same line using the term “design research” to refer to projects carried out by professionals does not seem very relevant to me either.

The central issue of this debate is the very nature of design. Can design, as a practice, really be defined as a science? The criteria to answer this question have not been decided upon yet. And it harms the image of “design research” to rank behind this label initiatives stemming from other disciplines, innovation-oriented initiatives, or new production processes applied to products developed according to the usual methods.

We must be cautious here. Otherwise we run the risk of blurring the message conveyed by a young discipline – design – still in the process of defining its very identity and of proving its legitimacy on the academic level. Doing “debased” sociology, or debased psychology to try and codify “design-induced emotions” is not a serious way of tackling the issue.

We must aim at centering research on a specific unique field based on a language of representation and on an interface linking all the knowledge produced by human sciences or hard sciences with the social and economical issues ruling the world we live in. Design is a language and an interface that brings human beings, ideas and knowledge together to shape a better world for tomorrow.

If we want to promote design as a science we must beware not to mix everything up just because design is all over the place and because conducting activities involving reflection makes one feel important.

Christian Guellerin, Managing Director of L’École de design.

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Tags: Billets

1 April 2010   Symposiums & Conferences   Essays

Sciences fiction and design : Jules Verne vs Léonard de Vinci

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Tags: Symposiums & Conferences · Essays