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Journal of Interactive Media

Editor-in-Chief: Ziegler, Jürgen

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Volume 16, Issue 2


Wicked, Open, Collaborative: Why Research through Design Matters for HCI Research

Arne Berger / Sören Totzauer / Kevin Lefeuvre / Michael Storz / Albrecht Kurze / Andreas Bischof
Published Online: 2017-08-10 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/icom-2017-0014


In contrast to the first and second wave of Human Computer Interaction, the third wave grapples with wicked problems. However, re-solutions to wicked problems embodied in artifacts frame and change the understanding of the problem itself. Research through Design (RtD) is a constructive methodology to understand this interplay of problem framing through designing artifacts. RtD is also suited to resurface the theory within those artifacts through annotation. These annotations expose and emphasize qualities, values and assumptions held within artifacts by its creators. In addition to those modes for annotation, we will suggest two additional abstract frames through which RtD artifacts can be further annotated: Open Research Agenda and Interdisciplinarity. We will apply both frames to one research artifact, Loaded Dice to distill qualities from this artifact’s framing. Through this we will show how creating and deploying an artifact can change its environment which also includes its creators.

Keywords: Research through Design; Third Wave HCI; Interdisciplinarity; Wicked Problems


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About the article

Arne Berger

Officially a computer scientist with a doctorate in engineering from a technical university, Arnes research takes an inter- and transdisciplinary Research through Design approach at the intersection of design ethnography and interaction design. He is currently the principal investigator of Miteinander.

Sören Totzauer

He is a computer scientist with a master degree in bioinformatics. His major research interest is how people can be motivated to take up agency for themselves, especially regarding the oncoming socio-technological paradigm shift.

Kevin Lefeuvre

He is a product designer with a master degree from Bauhaus-University Weimar. He is a tinkerer by profession and a user advocate by heart. At Miteinander he is exploring co-design methods and building co-design tools for designing smart connected fictions, scenarios, and devices.

Michael Storz

He is a Human-Computer Interaction expert with a master degree in Informatics. His research focuses on the design and the implementation of multi-touch tabletops and their applications for museums and exhibitions. Most recently he is exploring the intersection of social Internet of Things, data visualization and user agency.

Albrecht Kurze

He is a computer scientist. His research interests are networking aspects in all flavors. In his interdisciplinary PhD thesis he quantified the relationship between QoS and QoE for mobile services with about 300 participants. He is currently a post doctoral researcher at Miteinander, where he is in charge for the engineering and IoT and is also focussing away from technology – to the users and the implications we create with technology. He is a tinkerer since elementary school days and nowadays back at tinkering in the office.

Andreas Bischof

He is a cultural scientist and sociologist specialized in human-computer interaction and qualitative methods. His PhD thesis How do Robots become Social – Epistemic Practice of Social Robotics is an ethnographic science study within the fields of social robotics and human-robot interaction. His current research interests include the epistemics of interdisciplinary cooperation in human-computer interaction, Grounded Theory Methodology, Socio-Gerontechnology and the technization of social situations.

Published Online: 2017-08-10

Published in Print: 2017-08-28

This research is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) under grant number FKZ 16SV7116.

Citation Information: i-com, Volume 16, Issue 2, Pages 131–142, ISSN (Online) 2196-6826, ISSN (Print) 1618-162X, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/icom-2017-0014.

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