Design practice and research: interconnections and the criterion-based approach
This paper examines the connections between research, and practices of design including research by design. The paper argues that owing to different worldviews, what constitutes an effective practice within each paradigm is different. The received paradigm of scientific research benefits from high levels of coherence between its aims, methods, and outcomes as a result of many centuries of refinement. Alternative paradigms can be strengthened by reference to these structural features. If design wishes to develop a coherent response to the demands of design research it must therefore find a way of analysing the fitness of its practices to its problems and audience needs. This should come from a criterion-based analysis of research per se, plus any discipline-specific needs of design. The authors are working on a major project to develop such analyses, and this paper discusses their criterion-based approach from a theoretical point of view, and in relation to the Research by Design doctoral programme at TU Delft.