Design with the developing world: A model with seven challenges for the future

Rachel Sara Kuhr*, Kevin Otto, Ricardo Sosa, Nilanjan Raghunath, Katja Hölttä-Otto, Kristin Wood

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Design with the Developing World (DDW) brings a unique set of challenges as it asks people with very different expectations to collaborate on sustainable system solutions. Scoping for these design projects is therefore highly challenging, as there is little information on what needs to be considered in this vast collaborative and interdisciplinary process. This study identifies, and analyzes the barriers and enablers extracted from a selection of DDW literature, and clusters them into combinations of data effecting Users, Designers and Stakeholders. As a whole, we find that DDW projects need to grow relationships between each group. These groups must come to understand each other to create a new hybrid technology, as well as the supporting systems. Although gaps exist between Designers, Users, and Stakeholders in all instances where technology is created, we suggest here that larger gaps exist in the DDW domain. A transformation of these gaps is needed during development projects. These gaps stream into seven challenges we identified to create a methodical, well-leveraged, desirable, strategic, enabling, sustainable, and innovative solution.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the International Conference on Engineering Design, ICED
EditorsU Lindemann, S Venkataraman, YS Kim, A Dong, Y Lin
Number of pages10
Volume6 DS75-06
Publication statusPublished - 2013
MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventInternational Conference on Engineering Design - Seoul, Korea, Republic of
Duration: 19 Aug 201322 Aug 2013
Conference number: 19

Publication series

NameInternational Conference on Engineering Design
ISSN (Print)2220-4334


ConferenceInternational Conference on Engineering Design
Abbreviated titleICED
Country/TerritoryKorea, Republic of


  • Developing country
  • Participatory design
  • Process modelling
  • Reverse innovation
  • User centred design


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