OCEAN Design Research Association

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The Integrated Conglomerate Approach


The Integrated Conglomerate Approach

A suggestion for a generic model of design research

Presented at the Doctoral Education in Design Conference in La Clusaz, 2000
(Design Research Society.)

This paper is not directly about system thinking in design but it starts a discusiion on design research which is a precondition for system thinking in design. Upcomming publications will clarify this point.


In this essay the ‘Integrated Conglomerate Method' is brought forward as a generic model for design research.
Integrated: integrated in practical activities, spiral from tacit to explicit to tacit. Learning through doing. Exploration through practice. Practical work fuelled by theory. Theory derived form practical investigations.
Conglomerate: means to apply the adequate method to the theme or the part problem at hand. Triangulation of conglomerate findings from scientific and practical investigations is the glue that relates the partial explorations to each other and gives the research generic value.

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