This session is part of the PhD seminar series “Re-worlding” art and design research.
MAD-Research (PXL-MAD and UHasselt) and ArcK (UHasselt)


This seminar revolves around ethnographic research and how it can be used in artistic and design research to situate and problematise some of the general assumptions we often hold as researchers. It introduces us to the creation of ethnographic techniques that are particular for artistic and design researchers. It sets up a dialogue and exchange with Limerick University.

12:00-13:30: Keynote speaker

The first part of the session on “re-discovering” is moderated by Cristiano Storni, lecturer and senior researcher in Interaction Design and Director of the MSc.\MA in Interaction and Experience Design at Computer Science and Information Systems department (Interaction Design Centre, University of Limerick). He holds a PhD in Information Systems and Organization from the Faculty of Sociology in the University of Trento (Italy). During his PhD, Cristiano has studied the impact of ICT on people, organization and society, focussing on Science and Technology Studies (STS), Actor Network Theory (ANT), Social studies of Information Systems (SSIS), Ethnography, Participatory and Interaction Design. His research lies at the intersection of social science and design disciplines and in different application areas: Health Care, Web2.0, open hardware and software, and social innovation. In the design area, he is working on the ‘coming together’ of design (participatory and interactive) and Actor Network Theory.

Then two speakers will discuss the use of ethnographical approaches in art and design research. One from academia (Design School Kolding), and one from culture practice (Waag Society).

Thomas Binder is Professor in design and sustainability at Lab for Planet, Design School Kolding. He has previously been part of the co-design research center, CODE at KADK, engaging open design collaborations and participatory design in the context of design anthropology, interaction design and social innovation. His research includes contributions to methods and tools for experimental design research and open innovation processes with a particular emphasis on re-thinking the design object. He has been editing and authoring several books such as (Re-) searching the Digital Bauhaus’ (Springer 2008), Rehearsing the Future (Danish Design School Press, 2010), Design Research through Practice (Morgan Kaufman, 2011), Design Things (MIT press, 2011) and Design Anthropological Futures (Bloomsbury, 2016). He has been chairing the Participatory Design Conference in 2002, the Nordic Design Research Conference in 2005 and the Design Anthropological Futures Conference in 2015.

Dick van Dijk is creative director and head of programme at Waag ( Waag is an institute for art, technology and society composed of research groups that work with both grassroots initiatives and institutional partners across Europe. The collective has a shared attitude of public concern and civic activism, which is manifested in Waag's public research agenda. Waag pleads for a radically different approach towards technology as technology is not neutral. Waag collaborates with citizens, organisations, governments, artists, activists, designers and researchers in projects that effectuate change.
Part of Dick’s role at Waag is creating interactive concepts, strategizing design research and user involvement, and monitoring the development of the actual ‘thing’ – whatever it may be: an interactive installation, a learning tool, a co-creative design process. He is mostly interested in the crossover between virtual and physical interactions.
As concept developer he has worked on many cultural heritage projects, such as Mingei (on capturing and preserving crafts), Centrinno (on transforming industrial cultural heritage in makes districts) and meSch (on physical and sensory interaction with heritage collections). He has spoken and lectured on co-creation, emotion networking, mixed reality for heritage and playful learning. Dick is co-author of several publications on social connectedness. He is co-author of the book 'Connect, Design for an Emphatic Society' on age-driven design. Dick has a background in Business Economics and Art. Previously he has worked in interactive marketing and design.

Partners: In dialogue with Limerick University and our PhD and postdoc representatives

14:00-17:00: Parallel sessions MAD and ArcK

Starting from 2pm we will have parallel sessions in which our PhD students present their work.

Carmen Martens (ArcK)
Naomi Neelen (ArcK)
Teresa Palmieri (ArcK)

Joani Groenewald (MAD)
Jeroen Peeters (MAD)
Ode De Kort (MAD)

Learning outcomes

After having attended this seminar, you will:

  • know how to re-discover the world that you are studying, making use of ethnographic research approaches close to art and design research,
  • know how to present insights of the ethnographic work to the outside world, making use of art and design as approach.


An important part of preparing for any further professional step is becoming (more) aware of the competences you have developed and/or want to develop. In this seminar, the following competences from the UHasselt competency overview are actively dealt with:

  • academic research competences:
    • positioning research and question
    • research methods
    • subject knowledge
  • interpersonal competences:
    • presentation skills
    • personal effectiveness:
  • self-development


For whom?

  • PhD students and other researchers from the Faculty of Architecture and Arts
  • Researchers from other institutions who like to participate are always kindly asked to first contact the coordinators by email ( -

When and where?

  • February 11, 2021 - 12:00-17:00
  • This course will be organized digitally


  • Registration closed since February 3, 2021
  • As places are limited, registering does not automatically imply that you will be able to participate. You will be notified by email in due time.
  • Please cancel your registration at least one week in advance in case you cannot make it (cf. cancellation & no-show policy).

Acknowledged as?

  • category 'advanced discipline-specific knowledge'