Designer behaviour and activity: An industrial observation method

Philip Cash, Ben Hicks, Steve Culley, Filippo Salustri

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


The relationship between laboratory based study and the actual practice of engineering design is very important. For research activity, laboratory based studies have an important role. The problem is the
difficulty of relating laboratory study to practice, it is thus important to fully understand this relationship. To address this, an observational method is proposed that focuses on characterizing the
activities and behaviors of designers in practice. The method has been developed to provide rich context, whilst avoiding information overload. The proposed method is then critically discussed with
respect to the issues particularly affecting empirical design research, such as contextualization, validity and repeatability. Finally, the paper highlights the potential importance and impact of the method for
developing the relationship between practice and laboratory based experiments.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Conference on Engineering Design
Publication statusPublished - 2011


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