Expanding Design Space: Design-In-Use Activities and Strategies

Andrea Botero, Kari-Hans Kommonen, Sanna Marttila

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


    This paper introduces an analytical framework for understanding the collaborative nature and distributed structure of what is often referred to as design space. We propose that the design space should be conceptualized as the space of possibilities for realizing a design, which extends beyond the concept design stage into the design-in-use activities of people. By locating different activities and mapping participants' possibilities in a continuum from consumption to active creation, we develop a framework for understanding and locating design research interventions and a tool for mapping design activities. We argue that: 1) a design space is always actively co-constructed and explored by multiple actors through their social interactions with and through technologies and 2) the participating actors, resources, conditions and supporting strategies frame the design space available. In doing this, we bring forth relationships between an expanded view of the design space, contemporary discussions on the nature of innovation and the imperative to support explicit collaborative and participatory design activities.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationDesign & Complexity
    Subtitle of host publicationConference Proceedings
    EditorsDavid Durling, Rabah Bousbaci, Lin-Lin Chen, Philippe Gauthier, Tiiu Poldma, Seymour Roworth-Stokes, Erik Stolterman
    Number of pages11
    ISBN (Electronic)978-2-9811985-2-5
    Publication statusPublished - Jul 2010
    MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
    EventDesign Research Society International Conference: Design & Complexity - Montreal, Canada
    Duration: 7 Jul 20109 Jul 2010


    ConferenceDesign Research Society International Conference
    Abbreviated titleDRS
    Internet address


    • design in-use
    • design space


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