Hello fellow researchers,
as the idea of user centered design has become mainstream it is high time for a backlash. It's here: "User-Led Innovation Can't Create Breakthroughs; Just Ask Apple and Ikea" (fastcodesign.com) where Jens Martin Skibsted concludes: "User-led design leads to sameness".
Concerns about user research and innovation are not new – the problem of transferability from descriptive accounts of user behavior to new designs has been discussed. But a change of sides tends to forget the the mutual shaping of design and use – as e.g. described by the task-artifact cycle (Carroll, Kellog & Rosson 1991). Users do play a role in every (re)design, don't they?
What do you think – have we done enough user research? Is it just academic and anti-innovative?
Carroll, J. M., Kellog, W. A. & Rosson, M. B. (1991). The task-artifact cycle. In J. M. Carroll (Ed.), Designing interaction: psychology at the human-computer interface (pp. 74-102). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.