Spring 2020


While the future is inevitable, the future of design is not. At a time when technology-centered interaction reigns, how might human-centered needs be vital to the discovery of what design can and should be? This seminar will explore established and nascent methodologies of futurists to gauge the future of human behavior and design. There are many aspects of human behavior that remain more or less the same over time, and that are predictable. Still, there are also malleable aspects of human behavior. People leave traces that can help designers understand where we have been and where we are going. What will life be like in the decades and centuries to come—how might we work, play, and live? We will delve into these questions and uncover how designers can learn from and shape how people behave tomorrow. 

After this seminar, students will be able to:

•    Identify, define, and use futurist strategies to discover possible, probable, and preferable futures for design(ers)
•    Recognize and describe how human behavior and design are interrelated
•    Transfer learning from the likes of neuroscience, technology, psychology, and economics to influence human behavior through design
•    Explain how markets sectors (i.e., workplace, healthcare, education) are evolving and predict how design may shape their trajectories to help people thrive
•    Discuss potential ethical concerns for designers in an increasingly technology-centered world
•    Argue the importance of shared experiences amidst the reality of people becoming more isolated 
•    Summarize how design disciplines may converge or diverge in the future
•    Imagine and potentiate using human behavior to inform critical thinking and design strategy



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