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From human-centred to life-centred design: Considering environmental and ethical concerns in the design of interactive products

Publication Year: 2022
Contributing Organisation: Design Lab School of Architecture Design and Planning The University of Sydney Australia
Authors:
Learning Themes: Global Health

Over the past decades, the field of interaction design has shaped how people interact with digital technology, both through research and practice. Interaction designers adopt human-centered design to ensure that the interactive products they design meet the needs and desires of end consumers. However, there is surmounting evidence that placing the end consumer at the center of the design process creates unintended consequences, damaging global systems that are essential to human well-being. This article reviews emerging paradigms that provide a more holistic perspective, such as value-sensitive design, more-than-human participation and life-centered design. Based on this review, the article introduces a practical framework for life-centered design consisting of principles, actionable methods and a model for responsible innovation. The article discusses how interaction designers can use the framework to balance human-centered considerations with environmental and ethical concerns when designing interactive products.

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