Critical Journal / Contextual Portfolio: A framework for documenting and disseminating RtD as scholarly research
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- Conference Proceeding
- Proceedings of RTD2019: Method and Critique, 2019
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This paper presents a two-part framework for docu-menting and disseminating RtD as a scholarly activity, intended primarily for designers new to scholarly research and students developing Research through Design (RtD) as a mode of inquiry. The first part of the framework provides guidelines for documenting RtD through a Critical Journaling practice, which empha-sises chronologically capturing and reflecting on: contextual research, self and peer critique, and regu-lar ‘overview maps’, alongside iterative design pro-cesses. The second part argues for disseminating RtD projects through Contextual Portfolios, which situate design artefacts alongside key insights from primary research, innovative design processes, and self and peer critique, in order to explicitly frame contribu-tions to scholarly knowledge. The framework is demonstrated using an ongoing RtD project ‘End-game’; I show how ‘research data’ drawn from my Critical Journaling practice is used to produce Con-textual Portfolios, in order to present the research in different contexts. The paper concludes by highlight-ing the challenges of demonstrating scholarly rigour underpinning RtD that is ‘equivalent’ to traditional scholarly publications and suggests ‘open access peer review’ and an RtD community publishing model, supported by university presses.
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