Practical action as inquiry - facilitating appropriation in a design handover event
Matthews, Ben and Clark, Brendon (2005). Practical action as inquiry - facilitating appropriation in a design handover event. In: Proceedings: 6th International Confernce of the European Academy of Design. 6th International Confernce of the European Academy of Design, Bremen, Germany, (). 29-31 March 2005.
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In this paper, we introduce a perspective informed by the social phenomenology of Alfred Schutz, emphasising the inherently practical nature of action in the social world. We detail several important respects in which this view stands in contrast to other (notably social-scientific) perspectives that seek to account for social action. We briefly present a case from our own design practice of a ‘handover’ meeting where we staged a boardroom activity intended to facilitate the client’s appropriation of the design proposal. This provides a concrete illustration for a discussion that articulates the utilities of adopting Schutz’s distinction between practical and scientific ‘attitudes’ for the study of design, opening avenues for practical action as a revealing form of inquiry into design practice.