The emerging collaborative approaches to design require a rethinking of how empathy as a designer’s skill to step into the other’s shoes is traditionally considered. Empathy should be extended to participants who cooperate towards a common goal. A shift from considering empathy as an individual’s psychological ability to experience supporting dialogic and cooperative relations could be a better fit for collaborative processes. In order to achieve this change of perspective, a theoretical framework has been built up from a phenomenological account of empathy, focused on empathy’s nature of interpersonal experience, introducing others into one’s own personal horizon and enabling the acknowledgment of otherness. Empathy may unfold spontaneously within relational contexts, while still requiring its facilitation and support in addition to contextual circumstances which simply do not prevent it from occurring. Hence, this study aims to provide guidelines that support the design of particular conditions for enabling empathic experiences. The guidelines for designing the empathic experience have been drawn from a study of participatory and collaborative art practices, since they are associated with creating particular relational contexts in which empathic experiences are triggered. Art practices – immersive, collaborative and/or participatory – are analysed with the aim of understanding how they can suggest strategies to designers. This cross-disciplinary work channels philosophy and art into the current design discourse, in an attempt to translate theoretical reflections about empathy and our modes of experiencing those around us into practical suggestions for facilitating collaborative processes and managing the relational dynamics at stake therein.

Designing the empathic experience. Suggestions from art practices

A. Devecchi
2019-01-01

Abstract

The emerging collaborative approaches to design require a rethinking of how empathy as a designer’s skill to step into the other’s shoes is traditionally considered. Empathy should be extended to participants who cooperate towards a common goal. A shift from considering empathy as an individual’s psychological ability to experience supporting dialogic and cooperative relations could be a better fit for collaborative processes. In order to achieve this change of perspective, a theoretical framework has been built up from a phenomenological account of empathy, focused on empathy’s nature of interpersonal experience, introducing others into one’s own personal horizon and enabling the acknowledgment of otherness. Empathy may unfold spontaneously within relational contexts, while still requiring its facilitation and support in addition to contextual circumstances which simply do not prevent it from occurring. Hence, this study aims to provide guidelines that support the design of particular conditions for enabling empathic experiences. The guidelines for designing the empathic experience have been drawn from a study of participatory and collaborative art practices, since they are associated with creating particular relational contexts in which empathic experiences are triggered. Art practices – immersive, collaborative and/or participatory – are analysed with the aim of understanding how they can suggest strategies to designers. This cross-disciplinary work channels philosophy and art into the current design discourse, in an attempt to translate theoretical reflections about empathy and our modes of experiencing those around us into practical suggestions for facilitating collaborative processes and managing the relational dynamics at stake therein.
ADVANCEMENTS IN DESIGN RESEARCH. 11 PhD theses on Design as we do in POLIMI
9788891786197
collaborative approaches, empathy, design skills, collaborative processes, change, theoretical framework, guidelines, Art practices,
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
phd2019_Rampino_Mariani_Devecchi.pdf

accesso aperto

Descrizione: Cover, Colophon, Content summary, article
: Publisher’s version
Dimensione 644.41 kB
Formato Adobe PDF
644.41 kB Adobe PDF Visualizza/Apri

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11311/1075848
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus ND
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? ND
social impact