Towards a New Virtualist Design Research Programme

  • David Wang
Emneord (Nøkkelord): New Virtualism, design, design research, epiphore


This paper considers how the influence of computer-cyber networks informs a new way of seeing on the part of designers as well as design researchers.  In an adaptation of the notion of “virtual realities” made possible by computer technology, this new way of seeing is termed the New Virtualism.  The INTRODUCTION suggests that this computer-cyber way of seeing is only the third paradigm shift in Western architectural history, following design predicated on the paradigm of the human body (1) and the machine (2).  These three paradigms, following Tzonis and Lefaivre, are termed epiphores.  After the introduction, PART I outlines implications of New Virtualist ways of seeing as expressed design trends, in terms of style. This is followed by PART II, in which is addressed seven ways New Virtualism can impact design research.  The paper suggests that, while cyber technology vis-à-vis design might encourage some excesses of expression, cyber technology vis-à-vis design research actually helps to return design inquiry to constructs previous to the positivism inherited from the Enlightenment outlook.  In other words, a New Virtualist design research programme can accommodate the qualitative aspects of design research more comfortably than the science-based positivism derived from the machine epiphore.  This in turn promises new qualitative horizons for design research.

Hvordan referere
Wang, D. (2013). Towards a New Virtualist Design Research Programme. FormAkademisk - forskningstidsskrift for design og designdidaktikk, 5(2).