Sustainable Design

             

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Framing Complexity in Design through theories of Social Practice and Structuration: A comparative case study of urban cycling 

Tobias Barnes Hofmeister, Martina Keitsch

Norwegian University of Science and Technology (2)

barneshofmeister@gmail.com

Keywords: social practice, cycling, urban structure, design model

Abstract

Even if cycling is promoted as a new form of urban lifestyle, current car- centric approaches hold this type of mobility under gridlock. This article explores dissonances between visions, planning and execution in urban mobility and proposes a practice-oriented design model based on theories of Shove and Giddens. A model as a combination of mutual influences is developed, reflecting the complexity of urban design problems. The model is applied in a comparative case study on cycling in Freiburg im Breisgau (Germany) and Trondheim (Norway). In Freiburg cycling is of mundane, everyday character, while it carries traits of mere commuting in Trondheim. Applications of the model show strong connections between elements of structure, material, meaning and competence. The model can help planners and designers to grasp urban complexity within systemic relationships, thereby supporting steps towards a practice-oriented design. 

This paper is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International licence.

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Cite this paper: Barnes Hofmeister, T., Keitsch, M. (2016). Framing Complexity in Design through theories of Social Practice and Structuration: A comparative case study of urban cycling. Proceedings of DRS 2016, Design Research Society 50th Anniversary Conference. Brighton, UK, 27–30 June 2016.

This paper will be presented at DRS2016, find it in the conference programme


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