British Council India 70 Years

Invitation and Call for Participation
India - UK Design Education Workshop Series
Future of Design Education

Organized by India Design Council with British Council in India

March 09 & 10, 2018
At National Institute of Design, R&D Campus, Bengaluru

Download : IUDEWS Information Brochure

Download : IUDEWS UK Profiles


India Design Council along with British Council in India takes great pleasure in inviting you to the third workshop of India – UK Design Education Workshop Series. The topic of deliberation for the first workshop was Future of Design Education; the focus of the second workshop was on "Capacity Building". The third workshop theme is "Design Research & Scholarship".

From the UK, the workshop facilitators are:

Anne Boddington                 Kingston University

Steve Rigley                             Glasgow School of Art

Dr Jo Anne Bichard                   Royal College of Art

Dr Graham McLaren                 Bath Spa University

Dr Emma Dewberry                 The Open University

We invite design faculty from all across the country along with design professionals interested in design education, to this immersive design dialogue. This three-day intensive program is the beginning of a journey towards collaborative brainstorming to shape design education.

Aim of the Workshop

The key aim of this two-day workshop is to develop a shared understanding of Design Research and Scholarship and create the conditions through which to build developmental, innovative and lasting partnerships between Design Schools in India and the UK.

Design research internationally is still a relatively young and contested field and there are a wide range of different emergent models and ideas. PhDs in design extend from the traditional scientific model undertaken in laboratory conditions to those conducted through social science or humanities paradigms and that include non-textual and creative outputs and various forms of design practice. In addition there are also an emerging series of hybrid doctoral models including the ‘Professional Ph.D’ primarily for experienced professional practitioners who undertake applied research within their practice and also Ph.D.’s by ‘publication’ or by ‘portfolio’ which are all variations on a similar theme of recognizing different forms of advanced and experiential knowledge production that meets the broad definition of research, defined in the UK as ‘the production of new knowledge or insights effectively shared’ (i.e.research that is accessible and in the public domain) and therefore able to be referenced or built upon by others.

Arguably the challenges that the design community face are both pedagogic and structural, where there has historically been a lack of the discreet development of research skills, methods and methodologies within project, practice or professionally-based learning employed in the majority of design schools.

While effective for the integration of many different forms of knowledge and skills, it is often less clear where and how scholarship and research are located and rigorously conducted, so constructing a positive, reflective and iterative model of learning, but without the explicit inclusion and the underpinning scholarly rigor to construct and conduct research.

This workshop will build on challenges colleagues identified at NID in Ahmedabad and at the Habitat Centre in Delhi and also from the visits and correspondence with an increasing number of Design Schools. The workshop will aim to explore how to develop academic cultures and operational models that can support research and scholarship within design schools and also share knowledge and skills between the UK and India in ways that extend and internationalize the dialogue but equally reflect on our shared learning to date.

Many academic structures both in the UK and in India separate teaching and research and often categorize faculty members accordingly, ‘teaching only’ or ‘research only’. This has always been challenging for design communities in higher education, as design is, by definition, an amalgam of these and the skills, knowledge and expertise of designers often cuts across these structural academic divides in increasingly important ways. The frustration for many design educators is the articulation and identification of research often without the particularities of the academic language to do so, or to then distinguish and realize the impact and value of their work or of design as a field. It is neither easy or indeed quick to adjust and adapt and will take not only time and effort, but more importantly generosity and openness.

Design research and associated PhD programmes generally reflect the immediate academic context in which both are located and its breadth, critical mass and maturity. Doctoral research in design although growing in strength in the UK and internationally following significant investment by the Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC), remains a contested domain and one in which continued and shared international dialogue is both vital and welcomed.

The recent Delhi workshop focused on expanding the idea of the academic profile, in order to more overtly recognize not only the primary importance of scholarship and the diverse professional knowledge and skills associated with both teaching and research, but equally those required for working with business, industry, community or government partners. We also explored the idea of impact, of making a societal difference, and how we might usefully contribute as designers or design academics, working with our students as ‘proto-researchers’ to capture and evidence that difference publicly, as a means of demonstrating to a wide range of external bodies the added value of design to society and to the creative economy.

In this final workshop, we will aim to focus on building a shared understanding about design research, design scholarship and the impact of design such that we in the UK and in India are in a better position to build collaborative research projects and research capacity through the co-supervision of PhDs and the dialogue this generates. This will not happen quickly, as research takes time and considerable intellectual effort.

This workshop is a place to start, such that we can begin to develop and share a common language and the research skills, knowledge and competencies to enhance PhD studies in design internationally, through our discussions and by bringing networks of design academics together to build international bridges between the UK and India that can align to the future of the UK and its industrial strategy post Brexit.

As we discussed in Delhi, the PhD is traditionally considered a ‘proxy’ qualification for entry into an academic career, but as academic profiles have become more nuanced and the roles more complex and demanding, a PhD in its current form, no longer provides all the necessary skills, knowledge and competencies to become 21st Century academics and to lead the transformation of design education across the world. India and the UK together should be at the forefront of this fourth industrial revolution and design could be in a position to take the lead and to initiate new and innovative partnerships and collaborations.

Day 1

  • 9.30   Developing shared language and definitions of: Research and scholarship (in the context of teaching) Impact and evidence Structures and ‘frameworks’ of the UK PhD and the Indian PhD Building critical mass and supervisory communities
  • 13.00   Lunch
  • 14.00   Creating a scholarly environment and infrastructure within which research and impact are conducted Staff development and mentoring Teaching and Research Developing Themes
  • 17.30   Close

Day 2

  • 09.30   Developing Themes
    Shaping projects and proposals: (Ideation) the collective map
    Elevator Pitch and scoping funding opportunities
  • 13.00   Lunch
  • 14.00   Presentation of Project themes (a staged plan for funding)
    Access to Strategic Funding and skills development
  • 16.30   Close

Dates & Venue

  • Dates:   Friday, Saturday March 09 and 10, 2018
  • Time:   Day 1 – 9.30 AM – 5.30 PM  Day 2 –9.30 AM – 4.30 PM
  • Venue:   R&D Campus
    National Institute of Design
    # 12 HMT Link Road
    Off Tumkur Road
    Bengaluru 560 022

How to Register

The registration fees for the workshop is Rs. 3000/- per person (Rupees Three Thousand Only). For institutions registering three or more participants, the registration fees will be Rs. 2500 per person (Rupees Two Thousand Five Hundred only).

Interested participants please fill-in the enclosed registration form and return it to Sanjit Peter.


The payment for participation fees could be made by cheque or by electronic bank transfer. The details are mentioned in the enclosed registration form.

About India Design Council

The India Design Council is a national strategic body for design in India. It is committed to establish India as a center for design excellence. It constantly endeavors to increase knowledge, develop design capability, encourage businesses to use design, and drive value creation through design.