Designing with Children: A Participatory Design Framework for Developing Interactive Exhibitions

By Lykke Vils Axelsen, Lærke Mygind and Peter Bentsen.

Published by The International Journal of the Inclusive Museum

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: October 31, 2014 $US5.00

Involving children in the design process in the context of exhibition settings is a relatively new and unexplored field. We address the challenges of constructing and evaluating a design framework involving children when developing an interactive exhibition. In this, we draw on informant design, participatory design, cooperative inquiry, and child development research in order to adapt the design framework to children. The proposed framework was applied and evaluated on the case of the PULSE exhibition project at the Experimentarium Science Center. Altogether, six children aged six to eleven participated in three workshops based on the design framework. The analysis and discussion of the findings resulted in three design proposals for the exhibition. Furthermore, the study showed that the framework had the potential to engage children in participatory design within an exhibition context. The evaluation of this study indicates possibilities and challenges for future research and for designers to be aware of when designing with children for interactive exhibition environments.

Keywords: Informant Design, Cooperative Inquiry, Science Museum

The International Journal of the Inclusive Museum, Volume 7, Issue 1, January 2015, pp.1-16. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: October 31, 2014 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 923.689KB)).

Lykke Vils Axelsen

Masters Student, Experimentarium, PULSE Research Unit, IT University of Copenhagen, Hellerup, Denmark

Lærke Mygind

Student Research Assistant, Steno Health Promotion Center, Steno Diabetes Center A/S, Experimentarium Science Center, Gentofte, Denmark

Dr. Peter Bentsen

Senior Researcher, Steno Health Promotion Center, Steno Diabetes Center A/S, Experimentarium Science Center, Gentofte, Denmark


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