Design Research in the Digital Era. Opportunities and implications. Notes on Doctoral Research in Design 2020


Lucia Rampino
Ilaria Mariani


Released under the Creative Commons License Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) in the peer reviewed series Design International.

We are in a time of deep transformations, led by digital revolutions following one another. Such transformations, that are impacting our daily life, are not just technological, but also social and cultural. As a consequence, trends transversal to different fields are advancing, requiring the design field to be aware, responsive and, above all, predictive.
This book proposes an overview of the researches initiated in 2015 in the Design PhD programme of Politecnico di Milano. All of them explore the implications of the ongoing transformations, from the specific perspective of design research. Throughout the book, the cultural, organisational, social, and managerial issues raised by digital technology and its applications, are debated. How and to what extent such issues call for a reframing of design processes, practices and models? This is debated in the first and second part of the book. The third part taps into a growing but still underexplored issue, the ethics and social awareness that comes along in today’s smart and interconnected world.


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Author Biographies

Lucia Rampino

PhD in Industrial Design, she is an Associate Professor at Politecnico di Milano, Design Department. Her core field of research is product design, with a focus on theories of design and the nature of design processes, in particular as they pertain to product innovation. Her recent attention has concentrated on the opportunities that smart and dynamic artefacts offer to the field of design for behavior change. She has taken part in various research projects and serves as a reviewer for both Design Journals and Conferences. Since 2009, she is on the Design PhD Faculty of Politecnico di Milano. In 2018 she has been appointed as the PhD Program vice-coordinator.

Ilaria Mariani

PhD in Design, she is Lecturer at the Design School, and postdoc Research Fellow at the Design Department, Politecnico di Milano. She designs and researches on interactive complex systems for communication and social innovation, focusing on assessing their impact on users. Her studies span among Communication Design, Game Studies and Interaction Design, covering Media Studies, Speculative Design and Sociology to varying degrees. On such topics, she has been taking part in national and international research projects, being also involved in organizing conferences and reviewing journals and conference papers.


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