Design’s Big Debates

Design Research Society's 2014 conference invites you to engage in discussions and debates on the future directions of design and design research. We welcome you to join us in Umeå, Sweden, June 16-19.

The Design Research Society's 2014 conference invites you to engage in discussions and debates on the future directions of design and design research. We welcome you to join us in Umeå, Sweden, 16-19 June 2014.

We believe there is a shared discourse in design, one that includes all areas of design research, and that is of vital importance for our understanding and development of the foundations of design. This discourse is something we share and cultivate over long periods of time, as it tells stories of past, present and future trajectories of design and its role in society.

With an ever-increasing demand for academic specialization and increasing numbers of highly specialized conferences, there is a bigger need than ever for a venue where the design research community can address significant challenges that cut across domains and big issues that will influence the way our field, as a whole, develops.

The main purpose of the DRS 2014 conference is to foster and support a shared design discourse. By focusing on key big issues in design, we want to create a forum where the questions that have the potential to change the way we think and do design - its philosophy, theory, practise, methodology, education, profession and history - will be discussed and debated.

To create this platform for discussions and debates we want to open up a wider set of possibilities for engaging and participating. Thus, the DRS 2014 conference will make use of multiple publication and presentation formats, including both established ones such as 'papers' and new ones such as 'conversations', each with its own submission and review process as set out below.  

Now is the time to begin asking yourself: 'What do you think are the big debates in design?' What would you like this exciting conversation to be like to really matter to you - and how will you contribute to make that happen?'

DRS 2014 is hosted by Umeå Institute of Design, Umeå University, Sweden. The conference week will give you an opportunity to experience the nightless nights and sunny days of the Swedish Midsummer, and the many cultural events of Umeå, Cultural Capital of Europe 2014.

Johan Redström, Erik Stolterman and Anna Valtonen (General Chairs),
Carl DiSalvo and Jamer Hunt (Conversations and Debates Chairs)
Youn-kyung Lim and Kristina Niedderer (Papers Chairs)

Important dates
Submission System opens: 15 August 2013
Final extended Deadline for full Papers: 8 November 2013 (submission deadline: midnight in each author's time zone)
Deadline for Conversations: 1 December 2013
Submission of workshop proposals: 15 January 2014
Notification of accepted Papers:  mid-February 2014
Notification of acceptance of workshop proposals: 7 February 2014
Submission of position paper for Doctoral Colloquium: 15 February 2014

Release of calls for participation by accepted workshops organizers: 15 February 2014
Notification of acceptance of Conversations: 17  February 2014
Deadline for full Paper corrections:  17 March 2014
Notification of acceptance of  paper for Doctoral Colloquium: 15 March 2014
Deadline for submission of position statements by workshop participants to workshop organizers: 1 April 2014
Final acceptance of the revised Papers: 15 April 2014
Notification of acceptance of individual participation by workshop organizers: 15 April 2014
Doctoral Colloquium: 15 June 2014
Workshop: 15 June 2014
Conference Opens: 16 June 2014

Design Research Society:
Umeå Institute of Design:
Umeå 2014:

Any queries about the conference should be directed to:
The Design Research Society is a multi-disciplinary learned society for the design research community worldwide. DRS was founded in 1966, and since then has established a record of significant achievements in contributing to design knowledge. You can visit the DRS website at:

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