About the Symposium

The Herrenhäuser Symposion “Design Trade-Offs for Quality of Life – Exploring Grand Challenges for the Digital Age“ will explore design trade-offs and develop and implement design strategies that systematically and proactively increase digital technology’s contributions to quality of life (QoL). By bringing together representatives from different disciplines, from different countries and from different constituencies (academia, companies, NGOs), it will be focused to frame the design strategies, to point out their essential characteristics in more detail and to identify scientific perspectives and research questions for QoL that need more emphasis:

  • Including new perspectives (such as: socio-technical design), new design objectives (such as human-centered informatics) and new research methods (such as design case studies grounded in a thorough examination of social practices) for the digital age.
  • Emphasizing design methods that aim on a deeper understanding of people’s practices at work and in everyday life.
  • Empowering citizen in design (before and during use of newly developed technical solutions) by supporting life-long learning, engagement, and cultures of participation.
  • Accepting that the problems to be solved are wicked and do not have unambiguous solutions but require the analysis and exploration of design trade-offs such as:
    • Enriching and empowering versus automating human activities;
    • Democratizing decision making processes versus overburden citizens with personally irrelevant information and activities;
    • Being in control (autonomy) versus being controlled (prescriptive guidance);
    • Finding a balance between flexibility versus stability in working life;
    • Increasing versus decreasing the digital divide with new learning opportunities;
    • Exploiting “big data” for personalization versus violating privacy;
    • Analysis of a Detailed Case Study („Mobility and Self Driving Automobiles“) impacting QoL.