Culture Sensitive Design

A Guide to Culture in Practice

This book offers a detailed overview of both theory and practical methods to become culture sensitive in the 21st century design culture.
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Annemiek van Boeijen and Yvo Zijlstra
Article number: 9789063695613
Availability: In stock


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Societies worldwide are increasingly interconnected through trade, migration, education and digitisation. This has resulted in a profound new complexity of cultural groups. Consequently, designers are confronted with the challenge of gaining a clear understanding of this cultural diversity. Culture is a complex phenomenon defined by an ongoing process of shifts in human interactions and experiences. In addition to the functional, technical and economic requirements, it is primarily culture that defines how any designed object and service will perform and prove itself: a process that largely takes place outside the domain and control of the designer.

Culture Sensitive Design provides an overview of theory as well as practical models and methods, aimed to motivate and inspire design students, practitioners and educators to get in touch with different cultural values, customs and symbols. This is in order to avoid mistakes that may be obstructive for certain groups of people; to enable cross-cultural cooperation; to learn more about the diverse and complex layers of culture that define who we are, how we think, how we imagine and how we create; and to open up the design space, thereby creating a tremendous source of new ideas.

Richly illustrated with examples of real-life situations, the book provides everything necessary to generate optimal circumstances for the best design solutions to emerge.


Annemiek van Boeijen (MSc/PhD) is Assistant Professor Industrial Design at the faculty of Industrial Design Engineering at the Delft University of Technology. Her research focuses on the role of culture in design processes with the aim to develop design methods & tools that support designers with a culture sensitive approach to design. She is initiator and co-editor of the Delft Design Guide, moderator of the awarded Massive Open Online Course Product Design: The Delft Design Approach, and runs the double blended online course for master design students and design practitioners in Culture Sensitive Design.

Yvo Zijlstra is founder and designer of Antenna-Men, a network of multimedia producers and software developers. As coauthor and designer, he contributed to two books on design for the circular economy: Products that Last and Products that Flow. He is co-initiator and member of the editorial board for the Dutch cultural magazine Rode Haring, and graphic designer and visual editor of the Delft Design Guide.


"Offers a detailed overview of both theory and practical methods." – New Design magazine




ISBN: 978 17 8067 305 9
Author: Jason Ford
Format: Paperback
Dimensions: 28.9 x 21 cm
Pages: 128

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