A sustained programme of research at the Royal College of Art (RCA) since
1994, led by Coleman, Myerson and Bichard, has played a leading role in
the emergence of Inclusive Design within design, industry and education,
defining its theoretical principles and developing relevant real-world
practice tools and business case studies. This research had made an impact
in four key areas: it has influenced the public discourse and the ethics
and methods of the design profession; contributed to national policymaking
for older and disabled people; enabled economic prosperity through
development of new products and services; and supported advances in design
Vehicle and mobility design research carried out at the Royal College of
Art (RCA) since 1993 has resulted in industrial innovation in vehicles and
transport, both nationally and internationally, enhancing industry's
ability to provide commercial, societal and environmental benefits between
2008 and 2013. The areas in which we are claiming impact include
accessible, user-centred transport (Impact 1); future visions of public
service vehicles and systems (Impact 2); and innovation in vehicle design
for changing technologies (Impact 3). These impacts are produced through
design and consultancy. Corroboration of impact takes the form of public
records of achievements, and authentication by manufacturers.
The i~design research programme, which has been running in the University
of Cambridge Department of Engineering (DoEng) since 2000, sought to
understand population diversity in order to better inform design decisions
for mainstream everyday products and services. Impact from this programme,
since 2008, includes: skills embedded in companies through direct training
of over 280 designers and design managers from industry; direct
involvement in the improved design of more than 10 new products and
services that have gone into production; educational resources for
teaching Design and Technology trialled in nine secondary schools; over
800 wearable impairment simulators sold; and extensive web-based guidance,
methods and tools for inclusive design accessed in over 170 countries.
Design thinking has benefited the economic performance of business and
particularly the creative industries, changed awareness of design in
everyday life, and informed public policy. Users and consumers have
benefited from wider understanding of the genesis of products and services
and effects on their quality of life. Design thinking research has been
instrumental in forming a new business sector that provides design
thinking expertise as consultancy. It has changed the processes of
designers and design practices, and fed into UK design education policy.
Design thinking has crossed discipline boundaries; for example framing new
methods and processes in software engineering.
Developed through a sustained partnership with the V&A that began in
1996, researchers at the University of Brighton (UoB) have transformed the
curatorial and museological approach to the collecting, display and
interpretation of 20th- and 21st- century design in
one of world's largest public museums. They have changed the way the
museum proactively responds to the needs of higher education (HE);
reshaped conceptions of the museum as a physical and digital learning
space; and reconfigured the museum as a place for active professional,
creative and cultural dialogue about the roles of contemporary design,
design history and design policy.
Research at Kingston University led by Hilary Dalke has established the
beneficial effects of colour design for application in long-term health
care environments for people with neural disabilities. This work has led
to the development of spatial design principles for improving the
experience of service users, patients and staff.
Through her consultancy work with architectural firms, individual NHS
hospitals, mental health units, independent charities and healthcare
furniture and equipment suppliers such as Hill-Rom, Dalke has influenced
their understanding of the issues involved, leading to improved design in
hospitals, care homes and day centres, with consequent benefits for
patients, staff and visitors in four institutions.
Since its formation in 2005, the Interaction Research Studio (IRS or `the
Studio') has developed
distinctive practice-based research into new interactional possibilities
afforded by digital
technologies. Over the course of eight externally-funded projects the
Studio has worked on during
this time, it has made methodological and conceptual
contributions in the course of producing
exemplary research products.
CHAPMAN's research into emotionally durable design has radically shifted
the values and practices of global businesses, helping them to cut waste
and to enhance product, material and brand value. Through publications,
exhibitions, master-classes and films, this research has transformed
understanding of sustainable design in professional (Puma, Sony), policy
(House of Lords, UN) and cultural (Design Museum, New Scientist)
settings, propelling the field beyond its focus on energy and materials,
towards deeper engagements that link psychosocial phenomena with ideas
about consumption and waste. Furthermore, it has contributed to public
debate and policy with the effect that the term `emotional durability' has
now entered the international design lexicon, providing valuable shorthand
for complex phenomena influencing product longevity.
Design research at the Royal College of Art (RCA) has pioneered projects
and studies developing a design-led, systems-based approach to improve
patient safety in hospital and mobile healthcare. It has led a
multidisciplinary culture in which designers, clinicians, psychologists
and business specialists collaborate in development projects. This new
approach to Design for Patient Safety has had a profound impact on
understanding public service provision, on practice and policy, and has
realised commercial benefit.
In late 2010 Professor Sanderson decided to form the Flux ceramics
spin-out company at Staffordshire University in order to exploit a
significant market gap he had discovered via his KTP research project for
Aynsley China Ltd., Stoke-on-Trent. Flux has been able to exploit the
market gap discovered in a way that Aynsley China was unwilling to pursue.
Flux has produced cutting edge ceramic tableware design that has been
successful in terms of both sales and recognition as a valuable
contribution to contemporary tableware design. Flux won the Home and
Gardens Design Award in 2012.