A COMBINATION OF DESIGN- AND SCIENTIFIC- LED PROCESSES CAN BE A SUCCESSFUL APPROACH TOWARDS BUILDING INNOVATIVE PROJECTS
Editor: Erik Bohemia, Ahmed Kovacevic, Lyndon Buck, Peter Childs, Stephen Green, Ashley Hall, Aran Dasan
Author: Apud-Bell, Maria Jose; Dasan, Aran; Childs, Peter
Institution: 1: Imperial College of London, United Kingdom; 2: Royal College of Art
Section: Creativity and Innovation in Design and Engineering Education
Students like myself, the first author of this paper, with a science research background that have never been exposed to design methodologies initially struggle to deliver well-defined innovation led design proposals because they lack the flexibility to look into the future. They are used to structured procedures that are necessary for scientific experiments that do not provide space for imagination and improvisation. Within a design environment, speculating about future scenarios and how they will affect our behaviours are at the centre of innovative approaches. In some cases, design students, opposite to science research students, do not follow a linear process and then struggle to provide sufficient experimentation or hard evidence that backs up their visions. A combination of design and scientific tools provide an adequate framework for innovative projects: students that apply a scientific method to design experimentation are able to visualise, understand and express their progress. At the same time, exploring an innovative concept from both a practical and creative point of view increases the chances of creating a successful user-product interaction. It is equally important to base future concepts on current scientific research and to include creative design inputs to allow students to think ahead of what is happening today. This flexibility is needed to shape products and experiences for the nearby future. As a conclusion, a combination of both design and science tools can provide an effective route towards innovative design projects.