AHRC Design Challenges of the Future 2020

Final Reports

Recognising the world-leading design expertise in the UK’s universities and the contribution of university-led Design research to the economic and social challenges facing the UK was the impetus for the AHRC’s recently funded five short-term fellowships to explore the challenging themes of the Future of Mobility, AI and Data, Public Services, Public Policy and Place. Dr Claire Coulton (Imagination Lancaster) coordinated the project alongside staff from the AHRC.

The AHRC said, “Design features strongly in AHRC’s Delivery Plan 2019, in both strategic outlook and historical case studies. AHRC’s own portfolio of funded projects demonstrates the breadth and reach of Design research and the interdisciplinarity of its researchers. Recent projects have shown the discipline to be a translational lens through which to approach the Grand Challenges of the Industrial Strategy. Our responses to those Challenges ‘rely on recognising the human dimension in the development of new technologies’, and it is through Design research that we find that dimension.”
Despite the difficulties the fellows experienced due to the lockdown beginning in March 2020, the reports have been completed and make a real contribution to not only demonstrating how Design is making a valuable contribution in these challenging areas, but also reflecting upon and making recommendations for future action and opportunities for funding programs in these areas.
The reports have been researched and written by:

Prof Paul Coulton and Dr Joe Lindley (ImaginationLancaster) AI & Data

Dr Jiayu Wu (RCA) Future of Mobility

Dr Anna Whicher (Cardiff Met) Public Policy

Dr Matt Malpass and Dr Lara Salinas (University of the Arts London) Public Services

Prof Tom Inns (Strathclyde) Place