Life-based design as an extension of problem-based learning: A tool for understanding people and technology

Rebekah Rousi, Jaana Leikas

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference article in proceedingsScientificpeer-review


    Global conditions are changing at such a rate that foreseeing trends in technological development, economic fluctuations and climatic conditions is ever more difficult. When developing technologies, there is one constant factor that practitioners and researchers should be aware of, and that is people. This is not to say that people, culture and social conditions remain stagnant, for these too evolve with the surrounding circumstances. Rather, appropriate tools and capabilities for investigating people, their lives and life situations, are integral to understanding what people need in terms of technology, how these technologies will be used, and more importantly how they will be valued in the scheme of a person's life. This paper describes the process and outcomes of a course in Cognitive Science focused on developing the tools needed for Life-Based Service Design (LBSD). The course is implemented via problem-based learning (PBL), and students are guided through the process by charting an explanatory method adhering to the Life-Based Design (LBD) ontology. This ontology comprises: 1) Form-of-life analysis; 2) service concept and requirements; 3) fit-for-life analysis; and 4) innovation design. Results show heightened awareness and sensitivity of life conditions, values and needs, revealing design concept strengths and weaknesses in the pre-development phase.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationFrontiers in Education Conference (FIE), 2015 IEEE
    PublisherIEEE Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers
    ISBN (Print)978-1-4799-8454-1
    Publication statusPublished - 7 Dec 2015
    MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
    EventIEEE Frontiers in Education Conference - El Paso, United States
    Duration: 21 Oct 201524 Oct 2015


    ConferenceIEEE Frontiers in Education Conference
    Abbreviated titleFIE
    Country/TerritoryUnited States
    CityEl Paso


    • life-based design
    • innovation design


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