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Design Research Quarterly announces a new series of articles:

Date posted: 21/05/2007

Case Studies in Research: Knowledge and Inquiry

'we want to hold a discussion on how research steers theory'

Call for Papers:

Designers use the term 'design' to cover a wide range of activities and types of problems, and have many differing, often incommensurable and opposing models of design and its theoretical and methodological bases. As a result, they also have have a history of lively debates over specific theories. These debates have not been able to resolve differences.

Many regions of design are not well defined, and in such situations, researchers can find that apparently straightforward problems can lead to fundamental questions about the nature of design, what kinds of philosophical and theoretical positions that can frame the research and ground the methods, and their implications with regard to knowledge: what kinds of knowledge are possible within the frames needed to do the research.

In short, they want to hold a discussion on how research steers theory. Their idea is to look at research and theories in design not primarily as related to subfields per se, but to see theories as products of research problems themselves: the topics studied studied and the questions being researched. Rather than look at abstract problems of research and theory, they want to present actual problems as case studies. In this way, they can clarify design by mapping its terrain of activities and problem types with their fundamental theoretical and methodological requirements.

Over the next two years, DRQ will collect and publish articles on these topics and replies to those articles, using its regular publication schedule to build a discussion. If you have an interest or idea for an article or other submission, please contact the editor, Peter Storkerson.


They seek papers that explore issues including:

  • ontological and epistemological implications or requirements of a research problem
  • status of knowledge, its bases and levels of certainty
  • conflicts between the knowledge that is possible in a given situation and the research goals.
  • how research fits into fundamental paradigms: scientific, humanist, phenomenological, pragmatic, etc., and how those approaches compare in their strengths and weaknesses
  • working across the boundaries of humanism and science: the extent to which a research problem requires use of more than one basic philosophical frame and how different frames can be reconciled


3,ooo to 6,000 words

APA guidelines

Design Research Quarterly is a peer-reviewed journal published by the Design Research Society.

For information or submissions:

Peter Storkerson email: