Mediating bodies: universal design methodology and post-phenomenology


Kim Kullman, Charlotte Bates and Rob Imrie


A3. UD theory and practice

Date and Time

2014-06-16, 13:45 - 14:05


MA 1
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Design Case

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Short oral presentation


This paper develops a methodological argument about the challenges that universal designers face as they engage with bodily difference and diversity. Adopting a post-phenomenological perspective, the paper indicates that Universal Design practices could benefit from a critical dialogue around the assumptions and ideas about embodiment and the world that design methods and tools advance as they are employed to make sense of everyday experience. Without such a dialogue, there is a risk that the widely different ways in which bodies, objects and spaces interact can remain unaccounted for and thereby limit what may be designed. We argue that post-phenomenology, through its detailed understanding of the socio-technical mediations of experience, can inspire universal designers to develop a range of critical and creative ways of using and sharing embodied knowledge.