15:00 - 16:40
Session: S10
[Group Experiences] + Design
Design Listening: what designers hear and how they respond
Design Listening; Design-Led Innovation; Rapid Design-Led Interventions; Design Facilitation

This paper develops understanding about the practices of design facilitators during rapid design-led interventions and proposes Design Listening as a new phenomenon in design-led innovation practice. Analysis of evidence from an on-going doctoral study exploring value creation in rapid design-led interventions leads to a contribution to knowledge about Design Listening as a facilitatory and collaborative action. This study draws on data generated over a one-year period and uses constructivist grounded theory. The findings suggest that design facilitators simultaneously absorb and construct knowledge. The paper presents the Design Listening phenomenon and discusses this in the context of reflective practice. Data suggests that Design Listening allows design facilitators to respond to what they hear in three different ways; they challenge; they probe; they shape. The action of listening and the response it generates form the basis of the phenomenon presented in this paper. The paper concludes that a distinctive characteristic of this practice is that, in discursive workshop settings, reflective practices between participants are interconnected and that skillful practice is demonstrated by the depth of this connection evidenced by a mutual grasp of the design situation and its future possibilities.