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Accepted Paper:

Multispecies families' contribution to Design Research  
Clara Venâncio (Faculdade de Belas Artes, Universidade do Porto)

Short abstract:

This presentation draws on multispecies studies and more-than-human design to explore cats' and dogs' contributions to design research. We expand on possible material explorations and new product typologies by examining project CLAN interviews and family narratives.

Long abstract:

Historically, design discipline has been anthropocentric, and technological development centred on human needs and economic profit. Non-human animals and human-animal entanglements have been overlooked in design research despite humans not being separated from the environment and the other non-human agents.

Inspired by the works of Van Dooren, Kirksey, and Münster (2016) "Cultivating the Arts of Attentiveness" and Laurien, Jonssön, Lilja, Lindström, Sandelin, Ståhl (2022) "An Emerging Posthumanist Design Landscape" this presentation will look at multispecies family relations within the household and inquire about cats and dogs contributions for design research. Drawing on qualitative data from project CLAN (PTDC/SOC-SOC 28415/2017) from 60 interviews with 24 Portuguese families focusing on animal mobility, schedules, and objects within the house, we aim to gather insights about animals' preferences and needs within the home environment.

Ultimately, we will examine family narratives about animals' behaviour within the household and gather knowledge about individual preferences, object destruction, and the rise of interspecies conflict. We will look at animals' specific material interactions through these family narratives and expand on the impact of the household's material environment on interspecies family relations. We conclude by reflecting on possible material explorations that could arise from looking deeply into animals' lives, which could lead to new product developments and typologies for interspecies cohabitation.

Traditional Open Panel P340
More-than human research and innovation
  Session 1