Discerning Designers’ Intentions
European Society for Socially Embedded Technologies (EUSSET)
Design is often done by teams of designers and other stakeholders. Design also creates a time-lapsed collaborative relationship between designer(s) and user(s), who “complete the design through use”. The intentions of designers in designing and crafting computational artifacts are therefore important for multiple HCI and CSCW related research and design traditions, including (a) appropriation studies, (b) participatory design, (c) design criticism, and (d) design collaborations in organizational contexts. All of these design philosophies handle intentions differently, including normative, organizational, and ethical aspects of what designers and designs ‘should’ intend. Some people consider intentions to be highly important, and demand explicit articulations of intentions; some people question whether we give the wrong kind of weight to designers’ intentions. With this panel, we will bring these notions to the discussion table to allow a deeper understanding of the diverse theoretical perspectives and research methods available to account for designers’ intentions. This will help to theorize design as a social activity, and to understand how people negotiate, evolve, and change designs over the lifecycle of a product or a system. This panel opens a conversation, comprising multiple perspectives, to help HCI and CSCW develop new ways to consider designers’ intentions from an empirical and theoretical perspective.