Bridging the Gap between Design and Research: A Designer's Guide to Conducting Research


Design methods are often described as non-linear, collaborative, creative, and innovative. These are great qualities when trying to solve an ambiguous problem. But can these methods of thinking and working be applied to a task that is seen as very linear such as conducting research or writing a paper? This is a question that I had to ask myself at the beginning of my design PhD. With a strong design background, I struggled to research and write in the way that was seen as normal, my brain struggled to absorb information in this way. I was forced to think outside the box and come up with new ways of working, which allowed me to think creatively about the research. Taking my inspiration from design methods, and tweaking them, I developed a group of tools and techniques that helped me conduct research. In this paper, I talk about my journey of learning to adapt and develop different creative processes that continue to help me through my PhD. These methods have allowed me to make key connections in my research, write papers, read papers and make presentations etc. The aim of this paper is to help designers and creative thinkers who are interested in pursuing further education by showing them the methods and tricks I developed through my research journey.


Georgia Markham
PhD Researcher, Design in the Humanities Department, SETU Carlow Campus, Carlow, Ireland


Presentation Type

Paper Presentation in a Themed Session


Design Education


Design, Design Methods, Creativity, Conducting Research, Research, Creative Process, Creativity

Digital Media


Bridging the Gap between Design and Research (pptx)