Gregory, S. (1966) The Design Method, London: Butterworths

Gregory, S. (1966) The Design Method, London: Butterworths

The 1965 symposium on The Design Method was held at the Birmingham College of Advanced Technology on 21-23 September 1965. This meeting was called, according to Sydney Gregory in his introduction to the proceedings, in response to the different assumptions that were found to be made by participants at the Conference on the Teaching of Engineering Design held in Scarborough the previous year. The 1965 symposium would, he suggested, explore "in a relatively detailed way what the designer does". This exploration was undertaken at the conference by "more than two hundred people drawn from the most diverse branches of technology and design".

Design Journal saw the Birmingham symposium as a marker of the trend that was giving designers "a logical tool with which to make him a more effective part of the production team". Geoffrey Broadbent in his introduction to the proceedings of the next landmark conference at Portsmouth two years later would suggest that the 1962 and 1965 meetings' focus on the logical processes drawn from Operational Research was not wholly adequate to address the wider, and environmental concerns of architectural design. 

Of the 28 contributors to the proceedings, only John Chris Jones had also presented at the 1962 conference. Wolfgang Ernst Eder, Ted Matchett and Bill Mayall, who had all appeared in Scarborough, also presented papers in Birmingham and would all go on to appear in subsequent conferences as would Geoffrey Broadbent whose paper on Creativity, provides a link between the art of Howard Hodgkin presented at ICL three years earlier and some of the methods of Design Thinking that would become a mainstay of the designer's toolbox over the subsequent decades. Looking through the list of contributors it is striking that just nine of them were academics - the rest holding professional positions in the industrial and public sectors. 

Another striking aspect of this event are that these proceedings are still available in print from Springer. 

 

Gregory, S (1966) The Design Method, New York: Springer

Gregory, S (1966) The Design Method, New York: Springer

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