Dear Colleagues
We are proud to announce that the International Association of Societies of Design Research (IASDR) 2019 Conference will be hosted by Manchester School of Art, Manchester Metropolitan University, UK on 02-05 September 2019. The conference theme – DESIGN REVOLUTIONS – will explore how design drives and responds to revolutionary thinking through questioning the norm, probing the now and embracing the new.
For the first time IASDR will be held in the UK and will foster new thinking towards a compelling, meaningful and radical dialogue regarding the role that design plays in addressing societal and organisational issues. The biannual conference enables academics, practitioners and students join together to explore contemporary agendas, emerging directions and future challenges that are at the forefront of design research. IASDR 2019 will provide opportunities for the presentation and publication of a collection of high-quality peer reviewed research papers alongside the space to discuss and debate the evolution and revolution of design.
Conference website: www.iasdr2019.org


IASDR 2019 is organised under 10 parallel tracks that reflect the breadth and opportunities of the norm, the now and the new of design research:

Change – Design continually evolves as it responds to the context in which it operates. It spans boundaries and is shaped by disruptions – be they political, ideological or conceptual. What forms of change should design embrace and who are the thought leaders that are instigating change? What new business models and modes of operation should design support? How should design transition from the now to the new?

Learning – Design is inherently a learning process that supports creativity to transform current situations to preferred ones. While creativity is considered critical in education, is design being eclipsed by STEM subjects? How should we respond to the current challenges presented in education? What ways can design enhance learning experiences? How should design nurture creativity towards new ways of learning?

Living – Design surrounds us by shaping way we live through our consumption of products, the services we use and the cities we inhabit. It impacts the environment, health and wellbeing of all. What vision of living should design suggest? How should design be used to enhance our lives and the environment? How should design improve the way we approach sustainability and the circular economy? How can design enhance the urban environment?

Making – Design and making are intrinsically linked, be it through the use of the hand or the machine. The creative possibilities of materials and processes have long been
harnessed by designers to innovate. What models of production, fabrication and modification are going to shape the future? How are materials shaping design and how are designers shaping materials? Is the democratisation of making a positive of negative issue for design?

People – Understanding human behaviour, and just as importantly misbehaviour, provides opportunities to design collaboratively for, and with, people. By enabling social and cultural dimensions to be considered, design can connect to the needs of citizens today and in the future. Why are people important to design? How will co-design and co-production models evolve in the next decade? What social dimensions in society can design embrace and why?

Technology – From digital automation to machine learning and artificial intelligence to the Internet of Things, the technology landscape that design needs to engage with is become increasingly complex. Long gone are the days when design was able to humanising technology without engaging with other disciplines. How can design support the 4th industrial revolution? What is the role of design in discovering new technology? How should design connect technology and humans? How can design and creativity unlock the potential of digital technologies?

Thinking – The concept of design thinking has become ubiquitous within the design, business and innovation fields. While designers are able to consider complex and often competing demands, the nature of how they think when doing so is less understood. What are the relationships between thinking and doing in design? Can thinking by, for or through design address societal challenges and unlock innovation?? Has design thinking passed its sell by date or is it still a valuable proposition?

Value – Communicating the relationship between design and business has long been a challenge for design. While design is recognised as a driver for innovation, design has long been seen as a cost rather than an investment. How can design be effectively managed to maximise its economic value? What evidence is needed to justify the place of design at the board level? How will new models of design shape innovation thinking?

Voices – Design is global and multicultural yet debates have for a long time biased particular mindsets, ideologies and philosophies. While there are voices that claim that design is inclusive, realities have tended to support existing notions of power and hierarchal socio-political systems. How can design become more inclusive, ethical and sustainable? Has the time come for the decolonisation of design? What are the ethical challenges that design must address and how should they address it?

Open – Design Revolutions is about the novel and the new so we encourage out of the box thinking, so challenge conventions and probe the norm. What are the critical debates in design research? How should design research engage with other disciplines and what new forms of inter- and multi-disciplinarity will emerge? Who are the key thinkers and doers in design and why? What is revolutionary thinking in design research?


15 October 2018 - Call for Papers
15 November 2018 - Full paper submission opens
15 February 2019 - Final deadline for full paper submission
01 April 2019 - Delegate registration opens
30 April 2019 - Announcement of paper decisions
31 May 2019 - Early bird registration closes
15 June 2019 - Camera ready paper submission
15 August 2019 - Late registration closes
02– September 2019 – IASDR 2019 Conference


Full papers should be 4000-5000 words in length excluding abstract and references. Authors should directly address one of the conference track themes demonstrating a high-degree of academic scholarship, clearly articulate their research focus, provide a concise synthesis of the research context, describe the methods used to undertake the research, present the findings of the research and summarise the key contribution to the field.
Papers will be selected through a blind review process conducted by international review panel based on the quality, significance, novelty and rigour of the research. Accepted papers will be published once at least one author registers for the conference.


Professor Martyn Evans (Manchester Metropolitan University, Chair)
Professor Rachel Cooper (Lancaster University, Co-Chair)
Professor Steve Gill (Cardiff Metropolitan University, Co-Chair)
Professor James Moultrie (University of Cambridge, Co-Chair)
Dr Annie Shaw (Manchester Metropolitan University, Co-Chair)
We look forward to welcoming you to Manchester in 2019.