The Design Landscape

I’ve been teaching my Design Issues seminar this semester, and as in the past, the first project was to visualize the design landscape, demonstrating an understanding of the major disciplines and how organizations, firms, luminaries, and methods relate to them. There are many different approaches to mapping the information; Kofi Opoku decided to group the disciplines based on whether they primarily focus on form or behavior. Each discipline is relatively sized based on 2011 salary information from indeed.com. He added rings in the middle that show which discipline typically utilize what methods. The outer ring isn’t exactly a timeline, as it isn’t chronologically ordered. Rather, it provides dates the correspond with the beginning of each discipline. Finally, examples of schools, luminaries, firms, and professional organizations sprout from each discipline.

Kofi made some decisions that I disagree with—the separation of UI Design and Interaction Design, for one—but he had arguable reasons for each decision he made, and I think he created a theoretically sound representation of the space.

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