Fiction as a resource in participatory design

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This paper introduces the concept of ‘resourcing’ to describe the fundamental activity of negotiating the use of what is available for co-design. Even though resourcing is an ever-present undertaking in all co-designing, no theoretical concept has thus far addressed the constitutive practices in collaborative design processes. We define the concept of resourcing on the basis of pragmatist process theories and complexity theory perspectives of social life, which enable us to explicate the gap between managerial thinking that understands resources as objective entities to be planned and controlled, and the actual unfolding of co-design in complex responsive conversation. Through the analysis of three co-design events we illustrate how the different response sensitivities of co-designers can diversify and enrich resourcing. The analyses also reveal that resourcing is a dynamically evolving process that changes in response to what emerges in the complex interplay of intentions between people involved in co-design.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of DRS 2016 International Conference : Future–Focused Thinking
EditorsPeter Lloyd, Erik Bohemia
PublisherDesign Research Society
Publication date2016
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Event50th Anniversary Design + Research + Society Conference: Future-Focused Thinking - Brigthon, United Kingdom
Duration: 27. Jun 201630. Jun 2016
Conference number: 50


Conference50th Anniversary Design + Research + Society Conference
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


  • Resourcing
  • co-design
  • design facilitation
  • Complex Responsive Processes


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