Simon Bowen | Research Associate

Simon Bowen

I am a researcher and designer with particular interests in human- centred design, participatory design and critical design, and how they might contribute to a form of participatory innovation.

I am currently the Research Associate for the Newcastle University hub of the AHRC-funded Creative Exchange (CX) project, which is exploring the potential of “digital public space”. I support Open Lab’s 9 CX PhD students, and plan and deliver the Lab’s broader CX knowledge exchange research agenda.

From 2009 to 2013 I was the Design Research Fellow in User-centred Healthcare Design (UCHD), leading participatory design projects and developing a methodology for health service design. UCHD was part of the Collaboration for Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRC), South Yorkshire, funded by the National Institute for Health Research in the UK. For more details, see the UCHD website.

Since 2003 I have been developing participatory methods for producing designs that are both innovative and human-centred. In 2009 I was awarded a PhD for the critical artefact methodology I developed to support these methods, which has been applied in diverse projects with colleagues from Sheffield Hallam University, the University of Sheffield and the University of Leeds. I have subsequently been invited to lead seminars on this work in the UK and across Europe.

I also continue to work with colleagues at Sheffield Hallam University on exploring the design of digital devices and systems for capturing, storing and sharing memories utilising my critical artefact methodology.

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Associated Projects

  • Stained glass
    Shortly after Easter 2017 the medieval St Andrew’s Church in Heckington, Lincolnshire witnessed an immersive world of art, sound and history. A collection of artworks and performances used digital technologies to show the church’s past and its plac...
    August 30, 2011
  • Metro Futures
    The Tyne and Wear Metro has used the same trains since it opened in 1980, but these will soon need to be replaced. Nexus, which owns and manages the Metro collaborated with Open Lab to design methods and digital tools to involve more of Metro’s 40 m...
    August 30, 2011
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