Design Research for Change: A UK Perspective

Main Article Content

Paul A. Rodgers


This paper examines the current landscape of design research in the United Kingdom (UK) with a particular focus on UK research councils’ funded projects that aim to make a positive change to society. In recent years, design research in the UK has grown massively in terms of the number of students studying for a postgraduate degree (Masters and PhD), the number of institutions undertaking research, and both the quantity and quality of design-led inter- and multi-disciplinary collaborative research projects. The ongoing work presented here has involved significant data analysis and visualization of over 18,000 funded research projects in the UK. The paper highlights the recent ‘social turn’ and the increasingly collaborative nature of design for change research projects in the UK. The paper also describes some key characteristics found in and across present day design for change research projects

Article Details

How to Cite
Rodgers, P. A. (2018). Design Research for Change: A UK Perspective. Diseña, (13), 110–139.
Original articles
Author Biography

Paul A. Rodgers, Imagination, Lancaster University

Bachelor of Education in Design and Technology, Middlesex University. MA in Computing in Design, Middlesex University. PhD in Product Design Assessment, University of Westminster. Professor of Design at Imagination, Lancaster University. He is the Arts and Humanities Research Council (UK) Design Leadership Fellow (2017 – 2020). He is the author of nine books, including Research Methods for Product Design (co-author: A. Milton. Laurence King, 2013); The Routledge Companion to Design Research (co-author: J. Yee. Routledge, 2015); and Design School. Beyond Education, Research, Practice and Disciplines (co-author: C. Bremner. Vernon Press, 2017). He is an Editorial Board Member of the Design Studies journal and of the International Journal of Design Creativity and Innovation. He is a founding member of the Design Disruption Group, who strive for positive change in health and social care and elsewhere.