Design Research Methods Festival 2019

The annual Design Research Methods Festival 
of the HKB / MA Design is dedicated to theories 
and methods relevant to design and to design 
research. We invite six experts to hold a workshop, 
introducing the participants to why and how 
they do what they do.

04.11.2019 bis 06.11.2019 – HKB, Fellerstrasse 11, Bern, Auditorium (1. OG)

We are offering a limited number of guest-passes for each lecture. Please register here.

Memi Beltrame: Machine Learning for Designers (9.30–12.30 Uhr)

Artificial intelligence is more and more, becoming the core of digital products. Designing for products based on AI requires designers to know about Machine Learning. This workshop is a vivid introduction to the field of Machine Learning. It looks at its fundamental principles and different types of Machine Learn- ing using practical examples, from text categorization to image recognition and speech analysis. The goal is to learn how ML works and what the role of UX researchers and designers is.
Mami Beltrame is a UX designer in Zurich and has been working in the web industry for two decades. He is specialized in strategy and content-driven prototyping for complex projects, with artificial intelligence playing an ever more critical role.

Katherine Hepworth: Ethical Visualization — A Strategy for Dark Times (13.30–16.30 Uhr)

This workshop situates data visualization within the current global climate of political fracturing and growing mistrust in expert knowledge. As humanitarian and climate crises accelerate and are met with increasing polarization and proliferation of misinformation, the need for reliable, trustworthy information grows. It introduces the Ethical Visualization Workflow as a means for design researchers to contribute to combatting intolerance and mistrust in expert knowledge.
Dr. Hepworth is a graphic design practitioner-researcher, associate professor of Visual Journalism, research director of the Visualizing Science Project, and co-director of the Nevada Center for Data & Design at the University of Nevada, Reno.

Marieke Sonneveld: Art of Dying — Art of Living (9.30–12.30 Uhr)

We live with the paradox that although talking about death is becoming less of a taboo; the actual end-of-life is disappearing. Cemeteries, funerals, hospitals and hospices are located outside the living areas, and the care for the terminally ill is professionalized, including the rituals involved. We thereby lose the opportunity to develop our “Death Literacy” and miss out on an important source of inspiration on how to take care of ourselves and each other. This workshop explores how design and death literacy can be developed in interaction with each other by learning from each other. It examines the meaning of quality of death and dying for the quality of living.
Dr. ir. Marieke Sonneveld is an assistant professor at the school of Industrial Design Engineering at the Delft University of Technology. Next to her professional work, she volunteers in a Hospice, a place for the terminally ill. This work inspired her to found the Delft Design for End-of-Life Lab.

Peter Kessel: Methods for Citizen-Centered Urban Development (13.30–16.30 Uhr)

This workshop explores creative and experimental methods and formats for a more citizen-centred urban development on a municipal level. After some insights into our last project from Berlin, we will explore the methodology using the example of Bern Bümpliz.
In 2018 Peter Kessel founded, together with Mareike Lemme and Marlene Lerch, the Berlin based Studio Kola Bora. Aside from that he works as a research assistant and university lecturer. He studied Design Entrepreneurship at the HKB / MA Design.

Veronica Ranner: Polyphonic Futures — Collective Futuring on Silk, Design and Body Interfaces (9.30–12.30 Uhr)

Reverse engineered silk is one of the few biomaterials not rejected by the human body that is instead fully absorbed by its tissue. This characteristic enables unprecedented applications within and in interaction with the body, including bone and tissue replacements, biosensors and biodegradable electronics — in short, new wearables and implantables with a range of functions. Taking the body as a site for investigation this workshop will critically and collectively explore it as an “assembly” to be hacked and enhanced through bio-digital materials.
Veronica Ranner researches transdisciplinary interfaces between design, science and art. In her practice, she develops speculative scenarios and experimental methods for constructive and collective designing of futures. She teaches and exhibits internationally and completes a PhD at the Royal College of Art, London.

Eugen Pfister & Arno Gören: Horror — Game — Politics. The Visual Rhetoric of Political Myths in Digital Horror Games (13.30–16.30 Uhr)

Not all video games have a conscious or an intentional political message, but they communicate political aspects nonetheless. Games are not developed in aseptic laboratories without contact with the exterior. They are the result of their culture and society of origin and are at the same time reproducing these. Their developers are not creating games ex nihil but are falling back on known game design traditions. In this workshop we aim to analyse with the help of the participants some political “myths” (in the tradition of Roland Barthes) in two exemplary games.
Dott Ric. Dr. phil. Eugen Pfister is the project lead of the SNF-Ambizione research project “Horror — Game — Politics” at the HKB. He studied history and political sciences in Vienna and Paris. He did his PhD Thesis in the history of Political Communication at the universities of Trento and Frankfurt am Main. Dr. Anro Görgen is research assistant at the SNF-Ambizione research project “Horror — Game — Politics” at the HKB. He did his PhD Thesis on the media coverage of violence against children in the FRG. Currently he is working on a second PhD on the medicalisation of digital games.


  • Startdatum 04.11.2019
  • Enddatum 06.11.2019
  • Ort HKB, Fellerstrasse 11, Bern, Auditorium (1. OG)