Designing inclusive environments, Seminar 2/3

Location: Council Room, Strand Building, King's College London, WC2R 2LS. Google map of WC2R 2LS.
Date: 13 December 2013, 9.00-17.00
Theme: Design for all: meeting the needs of diverse users

This is an ESRC research seminar. Find out about our other research seminars.

Seminar details

The universal design (UD) movement is committed to a user-led design process that draws on the diverse experiences of people in interacting with the designed environment. However, there is little clarity about how, practically, knowledge of the diverse design needs of people can be generated and designed into the UD process.

Despite proponents of UD claiming that users are, or ought to be, more than passive recipients of expert opinion, what is the evidence of dissolution of the social relations of 'design authority', or the dominance of professional designers as the main agents?

The seminar will question how far people's diverse design needs can be addressed by UD. What might this look like, as the design of products and services will involve reconciling differing capabilities, where not all needs can be resolved in the same way (the example of tactile paving as assistive for some people, yet detrimental to the use of public spaces by others)? 'Design for all' is not as simple as the concept sounds, and the compromise of potentially conflicting preferences and attributes is involved.

Seminar schedule

Further information