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Researchers
Supervisors

 

Host institution: Eindhoven University of Technology, The Netherlands
Lead supervisor: Panos Markopoulos: p.markopoulos AT tue.nl
Researcher: Nikolaos Batalas

Investigate creative problem solving process: cross-disciplinary method diffusion

Description:
The proposed research will examine the diffusion of methods for creative problem solving in multi-disciplinary fields, such as interaction design. This subfield is the meeting point for diverse fields of knowledge where engineering, scientific and design approaches overlap, complement each other, cross-fertilize and compete. While the transfer of techniques and methods between disciplines can potentially increase creativity in support of innovation is can also be fraught with challenges. Methods applied may have diverse origins, may be shared between disciplines, or may be applied differently by individuals subscribing to different intellectual traditions. This whole phenomenon is described below as method diffusion.

A systematic investigation of the diffusion of methods aiming to support innovation can unravel how and why different methods are applied successfully or misapplied, transformed or improved when they are adopted by a different discipline and what push-back exists: adoption from a different discipline can lead to revisiting original ideas, improving them or rejecting them. Current practice regarding method diffusion will be documented, flagging areas of opportunity and pitfalls for practitioners. A (multiple) case study approach will examine creative processes that were demonstrably successful contrasting them to cases where a large degree of interdisciplinarity and methodological innovation did not meet corresponding success. Interventions to support specific design projects will be organised. Through an action research approach, the effects of these interventions will be evaluated.

Outcomes:
An analysis of current design practices characterizing pitfalls and best practice. A roadmap for method diffusion to support creativity and innovation will be proposed, and experiences from its application will be reported.