This workshop aims to bring together researchers from academia and industry, as well as industry practitioners, who are conducting UX design and evaluation work and who either are applying theories, theoretical concepts and frameworks in their UX research or have concrete plans to do so. This workshop addresses three topics:

  • Applicability and appropriation of theories and theoretical concepts in UX design and evaluation: Which theories are used, and for what purpose? When are theories considered and proved to be useful in UX design and evaluation situations? How are theories and theoretical concepts applied and/or adapted to UX research questions?
  • Transferability of theories and theoretical concepts from research to practice: How different are researchers’ views from practitioners’ with respect to the necessity, utility and difficulty of applying theories in UX design and evaluation work?
  • Scoping of theories: Is there a general theory that can be applied to studying UX in different settings? Conversely, is there a specific theory that is applicable only for studying UX in a unique context?

This workshop intends to produce three outputs:

  • Insights on how theories and theoretical concepts are used in UX design and evaluation cases (based on the presentations by workshop participants).
  • Identification of the different perspectives of UX and understand how the different stances on UX use theories for UX research and practice.
  • Summary of challenges in applying theories and theoretical concepts in UX design and evaluation work, and outlining of the next steps to overcome existing barriers between theory and practice.

The workshop builds on the outcome from our SIG – Special Interest Group Session on “UX Research: What Theoretical Roots Do We Build On – If Any?” from CHI 2011, and is now also published as WiP Paper at CHI 2012 (see Obrist, M., Roto, V., Vermeeren, A., Väänänen-Vainio-Mattila, K., Law, E.L-C., Kuutti, K. (2012). In Search of Theoretical Foundations for UX Research and Practice. Proceedings CHI EA’12).