Inspiration mining: Exploring startup research(ers) strategies Part III
Authors: Paulo Maldonado, Pedro Seiça, Ana Margarida Andr, Vera Matos
Abstract: We know the difﬁculties inherent to the discovery of a timely research topic, capable of becoming a signiﬁcant contribution to knowledge and science in Design. The article describes and presents the results of an atypical process of Design research, tested in a Masters in Design. The objectives of the research process under analysis focus on the development of research skills and critical reﬂection in a collaborative environment of exploration of the (apparently) unknown (i.e. outside the areas of individual comfort), in search of new meanings. The starting point is the exploration of concepts, ideas and themes (inspiration mining) starting with a proposal for curation of reference titles, with the purpose of discovering, through the establishment of relations more or less (im)probable, relationships and conceptual leaps and ﬂashes of inspiration through the ideas with the greatest potential (ﬁrst in a perspective of divergence and expansion, then in a perspective of convergence and concentration), possible points of interception, new (disruptive) concepts, ideas and unexpected themes inspirers for the individual research project, going through the itinerary – discovery > interpretation > ideation > experimentation > transformation. Starting with a curation of 12 printed reference titles (some of the titles may be lateral to the scientiﬁc area of study) plus 2 key titles, the students select and use (for 60 minutes) 6 reference titles of their choice, identifying and registering, under the form of a mental map and on paper (A3), 18 concepts, ideas and themes (3 per title). They then elaborate an analytical index of the 18 concepts, ideas and themes and depart to relate and discuss 9 of the 18 concepts, ideas and themes. The process culminates in the construction of a distinctive narrative originating in the 9 concepts, ideas and themes (in the form of text and ideographic). The result of the process is translated into a document in the form of a scientiﬁc article that can use the new media as a communication support and can be supported by artifacts (images) that contextualize the discourse. The research environment is an incubator of possible futures for design research, testing innovation through content curation, collaboration and connectivity, supported by the inspirational collaborative and interactive intelligence platform - inspædia (www.inspaedia.com). Rapid prototyping of possible ideas for research topics among participants (inspired cultural provocateurs) coach, prepares and transforms educated thinkers into highly educated thinkers to be innovation. This article (Part 3) presents a synthesis of the selected works developed by the students in the current academic year (2022-2023).
Keywords: Design Education, Inspiration Mining, Design Research, Critical Reflection, Literature Review, Design Theory and Criticism
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