Yu Kao

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Areas of interest: urgan interactive installation, placemaking, experience centre design, design research methods

Bachelor of Creative Industries (Interactive and Visual Design) hons., QUT

Yu is an interaction designer and researcher a part of Urban informatics group within QUT design lab. She also works at QUT as a sessional academic, research assistant and public program facilitator. Her research interest is to explore the sociocultural influence of interactive medias. Yu’s background includes graphic design, UI and UX design, interaction design and design research. Her previous work showcased in exhibitions include – Spectrum Now, Sydney (2016), CreateX, Brisbane (2016) and Reform, Brisbane (2017)

Thesis title: Placemaking through interactive installations: toward a framework for urban Interaction design 

Interactive technologies are increasingly seen within public spaces, rather than workplaces alone. Without the concern of place, interaction design becomes alienated from the local people, culture and physical environment. This PhD explores the experiences that interactive installations facilitate in the context of urban environments to better understand the role of interaction design in creating a sense of place.

The aim of this research is to develop a theoretical framework to address design sensitivity to emphasize the notion of place in urban interaction design. In order to achieve this outcome, this PhD adopts a research through design (Koskinen, Zimmerman, Binder, Redstrom, & Wensveen, 2011) approach through three key phases. Phase#1 of research activities includes interviews and participant observations to collect empirical data. Phase#2 draws inspiration from constructive grounded theory to analyse the data and construct a theoretical framework for urban interaction design. In phase#3, the developing framework will be validated through applying the framework within the process of designing an interactive installation. This will allow the framework and its design outcome to be evaluated in the real-life setting to ensure the validity of the framework and its feasibility for design application.

This research aims to enhance constructive design knowledge toward interaction design in urban environments and prompt place concerned design sensitivity in interaction design practice. This design framework aims to enrich the meaning and experience in urban environment, and shift urban interaction design beyond creating designs in place, to creating designs for place.