Participatory theatre in the design of public services

Projekter: ProjektForskning



With public sectors facing reductions, multi-cultural pluralism, digitalisation, private competition and more, the Nordic participatory design tradition is challenged to deliver sound public service solutions. The primary objective of this network is to develop participatory forms of theatre that support the design of user-friendly public services. The network will bring together partners, who share a concern in the social aspects of change processes and have successfully used theatrical approaches in the design of novel services. We come from four complementary research traditions: Participatory Design (Denmark), Organisation Studies (Finland), Innovation Management (Sweden) and Drama Education (Norway). In three workshops we explore how theatre may contribute to (1) emergence of design through live exploration, (2) expressing what is difficult to articulate and (3) reflexivity in organisations. In addition we will investigate (4) barriers to citizen participation at the Participatory Innovation Conference 2017 in Sweden. The secondary objective is to engage professional actors and designers in every workshop, as the research field demands systematic practice experiments. We will also work with theatre and design students and with junior researchers in each location to foster young research talent and to trial elements of a new curriculum for educating participatory theatre practitioners.


Effektiv start/slut dato01/01/201730/09/2018


  • Malardalens hogskola (Projektpartner)
  • Lappeenranta University of Technology (Projektpartner)
  • University of Bergen (Projektpartner)
  • Syddansk Universitet (leder)