Design ⇅ Research ⇄ Sociology
Gender ⇆ Visual Culture ⇅ Fashion
Floriane Misslin
Workshops: Designing Research Methods
I propose workshops on the design of research methods that invite students to creatively and critically consider the politics and ethics of research methods by experimenting with ways of producing data and interviewing. I do these workshops with the students of MA Geo-Design at Design Academy Eindhoven (NL) since September 2020 and did a workshop with MA Graphic Media Design at London College of Communication (UK) over 3 weeks in January 2021. ⤿2020-now
This series of workshops aims to explore live, sensory and inventive research methods to provoke new ways of thinking research methodologies in design.
Live sociology calls for the design of research ‘methods that moves with the social world’ rather than captures it into static forms. (see Back, 2012, Live Sociology: Social Research and its Futures) ⤓ More references on live sociology and inventive methods at the bottom of the page.
The workshops offer opportunities to explore how research methods define the materiality and qualities of the data being produced. This is about experimenting with creative ways of doing interviews and field work by engaging senses, objects and events.
It also calls the designers to being sensible to their own sensory experience of the research process and how this conditions the knowledge they produce. The workshop is the occasion to stress the importance of ethics and thinking of methodological solutions to ethical limitations in research.
☟ What follows is the documentation of the workshops held with MA Geo-Design students at Design Academy Eindhoven in September 2020, September and October 2021. Below is the documentation of the workshops at London College of Communication in January 2021 ☟
As a group, we formulated a common research question and students randomly picked a research device with which to produce data. The aim is to notice how each method will respond to the same research question differently. At Design Academy Eindhoven, participants researched fashion and clothing production through devices such as; measures, auto-ethnography, privacy policies, Google street views, CAPTCHA, TikTok, and more. At London College Communication, they used similar devices to research fashion photography in relation to gender.
︎↙︎ On the left, a few of the devices students could pick randomly ↘ On the right, the diagrams participants could use to document their process and reflect on their experiences of data production, the limitations of their methods, and the ethics to consider.
↘︎ With students from MA Geo-Design year 2, we worked on defining their research questions with mapping, auto-ethnography, writing exercices and learning to give feedback to each other.
↘ The workshop with MA Graphic Media Design at London College of Communcation was held online, on Miro. The workshop was called "Making a mess with research and fashion imagery" to let students explore the messiness of research methods, hence challenging the assumptions that research categorises and make things tidy.
On live, sensory and inventive research methods in sociology:
Back, L., 2012. Live Sociology: Social Research and Its Futures. Sociological Review 60, 18–39.
Back, L., Puwar, N., 2012. A Manifesto for Live Methods: Provocations and Capacities. Sociological Review 60.
Coleman, R., 2017. A Sensory Sociology of the Future: Affect, Hope and Inventive Methodologies. The Sociological Review 65, 525–543.
Coleman, R., Ringrose, J. (Eds.), 2013. Deleuze and Research Methodologies, Deleuze Connections. Edinburgh University Press.
Law, J., 2004. After Method: Mess in Social Science Research. Routledge.
Lury, C., Wakeford, N. (Eds.), 2012. Inventive Methods: The Happening of the Social. Routledge.