Lawson on useless research

Lawson, How Designers Think (2005):

“With the introduction of systematic design methods into design education it became fashionable to require students to prepare reports accompanying their designs. Frequently such reports contain a great deal of information, slavishly gathered at the beginning of the project. As a regular reader of such reports, I have become used to testing this information to see how it has had an impact on the design. In fact, students are often unable to point to any material effect on their solutions for quite large sections of their gathered data.”

There’s research, and then there’s anxious defensive stockpiling of banal material. In my experience, the latter far outweighs the former in student design research.

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