Sunday, May 10, 2009

Ahead of my visit to Liverpool next week (and Tate Liverpool and, even better, FACT...) here is my paper I'm giving at the European Academy of Management (see . I've already had loads of useful criticism including from journal editors (within management/org studies). I'm posting it here in the expectation of reworking the paper after EURAM and welcome other feedback from readers.

Design practices in design thinking

Management and organization scholars interested in design typically draw on Simon’s (1969/1996) distinction between science and design. Scholars, educators and practitioners proposing that managers adopt “design thinking” often describe the practices of professional designers, but neglect the studies of designers’ activities in design studies. For its part, that tradition has paid little attention to the practice turn in contemporary social theory and the role of non-designers in constituting designs during consumption. This paper contributes to discussions about the value of the ways designers do things by using the practice perspective to attend to what constitutes design practice. Drawing together these traditions – studies of what designers do within design studies, and practice theory within organization studies – a pair of concepts is proposed: “design-as-practice” and “designs-in-practice”. Using this pair offers a way to move beyond discussions of individual designers and acknowledge the work done by others in constituting designs.

Key words
Design thinking, design, practice, design-as-practice, designs-in-practice

Download the paper from here

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