Project leader: Robert Ramberg, Professor.
Other participants at DSV: Chiara Rossitto, Ph D.  Jakob Tholander, Associate professor.
External partners:Henrik Artman, Professor, Royal Institute of Technology. Klas Karlgren, Ph D, Karolinska Institute.
Project period: 2010–2013
Funding: The Swedish research council/educational science.
Budget: 4 996 000 SEK.


In the project we study processes involved in the creation of design representations, more in particular the role that representational tools and action play in that process. This question has become increasingly relevant in the field of interaction design (ID) since design representations have a key role in the practical work, the outcomes of it and in ID curriculum. Tools used in creation of design representations have limited power to represent the essentials of what is focused, namely interaction itself with its dynamic and temporal aspects. Further, ID is often about proposing novel ideas about future interaction and the lack of conventions, tools, etc often lead to misunderstandings and a need for continuous negotiation. The project investigates what role representational tools and action (designers´ design oriented actions) play in processes of sketching, and the misunderstandings and problems designers run into and how these are overcome.

Research questions addressed in the project are:

  • What roles do representational artefacts (and their characteristics) and designers´ representational actions have in processes of sketching? Specific focus is directed to how sketches of interaction or use are given meaning in a process of collaborative production of ideas
  • What kinds of misunderstandings and problems do designers run into and how are these resolved? Specific focus is directed to the roles of various representations in processes of overcoming and resolving these, e.g. by using traditional conceptual tools (such as design principles, guidelines), sketches and design patterns.

Contact: Prof. Robert Ramberg


Artman, H., Karlgren, K., Ramberg, R., & Strååt, B., (2012). Designing Interaction in Interaction Design: Using interactionarires in order to understand student use of interaction design concepts. In proceedings of International conference Designs for Learning, Copenhagen, Denmark.
Eriksson, E., Artman, H., Swartling, A., (Accepted). Secret personas. Paper accepted for presentation at CHI2013 and publishing in conference proceedings.
Karlgren, K., Artman, H., & Ramberg, R., (Manuscript). Looking interaction design in the “I”. To be submitted.
Karlgren, K., Artman, H., Ramberg, R., (Manuscript). Designing Interaction: How interaction design students address aspects of interaction. To be submitted.
Tholander, J., Normark, M., Rossito, C. (2012). Understanding Agency in Interaction Design Materials. In Proc. of CHI 2012, pp. 2499-2508. Austin, USA.
Ramberg, R., (2011). The Language of Design. In Research Media: International innovation, key drivers to improving quality of life, 2011, issue 4, pp 93-95.
Ramberg, R., Artman, H., & Karlgren, K., (Manuscript). Designing Interaction in Interaction Design: Using interactionarires in order to understand student design processes. Manuscript to be submitted to International journal Designs for Learning.
Wang, Jinyi., Ramberg, R., & Kuoppala, H., (2012). User Participatory Sketching: A Complementary Approach to Gather User Requirements. In proceedings of APCHI 2012.
Wang, JinYi., & Ramberg, R., (2012). User Participatory Sketching in User Requirements Gathering. In International Journal Research and Surveys ICIC-express letters: Special issue on Computer Human Interaction, vol. 6, no 12, dec 2012.