Departmental Papers (ASC)

Document Type

Government Publication

Date of this Version

July 1997

Publication Source

Design in the Age of Information, A Report to the National Science Foundation(NSF)

Start Page


Last Page



From a likely trajectory of design problems, the paper identifies several design principles that can be expected to inform design in the next century. Underlying them is a shift in emphasis from technological to human considerations or from hardware to information. Along this trajectory design must increasingly afford a diversity of meanings (as opposed to realizing fixed functions), respond to many stakeholders (as opposed to catering to serviceable end users), address interactivity and virtuality (as opposed to materiality), support heterarchies, dialogues, or conversations (as opposed to standardizing social practices), rely on a second-order science for design (as opposed to a first-order theorizing, by engineers or ergonomists for example), generate knowledge that opens possibilities for design (as opposed to re-searching a past for previously existing constraints), develop graduate design education programs that continually rearticulate design discourses (as opposed to reproducing design traditions).


artificiality, human centeredness, design principles, information, interactivity, stake holders, discourse



Date Posted: 20 March 2008