The scope of the Department of Design also includes the elaboration of design and media theory issues and the review of cultural, ethical, and semiotic research.
Design research pursues the goal of collecting and expanding knowledge about topics relevant to design, in order to then make this knowledge available both within the framework of instruction to students, as well as to companies and institutions that approach the university with corresponding questions.
In the following fields we offer services in the area of research, development of solution scenarios, prototyping and impact research:
In order to be able to carry out investigations on concrete examples, a corresponding documentation archive will be established
On the basis of individual examples, those parameters can be defined, in close cooperation with companies and institutions, whose knowledge appears to be decisive for the development of communicative contexts.
On the basis of such a catalog of questions, corresponding solution models can be developed. Theoretical work is purposefully oriented to current, practical topics within the framework of the research area of the FH Vorarlberg.
Can basic principles of professional design work be transferred to other areas of innovation?
We accompany innovation processes in companies and institutions to question and optimize guiding ideas, goals and processes.
In doing so, not only visual, acoustic, spatial, tactile or olfactory elements, but also economic, social, cultural or ethical issues can be thematized.
The goal of such processes is the joint development of solution-oriented approaches, suitable models, integrated tools and appropriate guidelines.
Concepts only have an impact if they can be implemented.
In the diverse laboratories, new ideas can be tested directly in practice. The joint practical work is also suitable for exploring new options for action, for example using interactive models (Internet of Things).
With the available tools, both analog and digital prototypes can be developed at the current state of the art in Engineering and Technology.
What cannot be realized physically with the available resources can be tested via simulation techniques in virtual space, on the web or in an app.
How can social transformation processes be better accompanied by media? Up to now, the mapping of problem situations, ideas, solution approaches or stakeholder networks has often taken place in workshops in analog form. Popular tools for this are moderation cards, posters, Post-Its, pens or cords. What do digital counterparts look like that enable hybrid or completely virtual working methods?
In collaboration with Zeppelin University, we are exploring low-threshold approaches to solutions in an IBH small-scale project. The aim is to make multiperspectivity visible, especially the tracing of implicit and silenced perspectives in
power-unique situations and problematic situations. Relationships, connections and commonalities between actors are to be made visible and thus promote relational thinking and cross-contextual action. The challenge is to develop interactive settings for very heterogeneous groups of users, which can be used in real work meetings as well as in virtual encounters to map progress and provide a common protocol and memory of the planning process.
The pandemic is acting as a catalyst in the development of new tools. In particular, we're looking at open source-based tools like Wekan, SpaceDeck, and BigBlueButton, which are customizable, combinable, and extensible in perspective.
A community newsletter no longer reaches all target groups. With the Vorarlberg regions Vorderland and Walgau, we develop strategies, implement pilot projects and offer workshops.
The aim is to develop partnerships for citizen-oriented communication, for example with regional reporters.
Youth will be invited to post on social media walls. Print media will be reworked to play well with online presences. We will document the tutorials and our experiences in the project on a website.
How can climate change measures be gently communicated without being perceived as a loss of quality of life, but perhaps even as a gain?
With the Energy Institute Vorarlberg, a concept, a design manual and a brand were developed and twelve media channels were used.
With the ALLMENDA cooperative and the Ecology Institute, experiments were offered to associations, departments or kindergartens that whetted their appetite for a climate-friendly lifestyle.
Monitoring showed that 10,000 Vorarlberger:innen ate less meat or drove less by car because of Probier amol and the viral communication elements. 40,000 people perceived the brand as a label for a climate-friendly lifestyle, which is still 17% of the population of Vorarlberg.