I am attaching here my recent paper on mindful design, as well as the concept map. Ideally, this paper will be the basis for my thesis work.
My Primary Question:
How can mindful design be used as a catalyst to generate mindfulness and promote conscious decision-making?
The premise of this focus is that design can cultivate individual awareness, ultimately improving personal experience. When we are mindless to the world around us (on auto-pilot) it affects how we make choices. Rather than creating awareness for the purpose of selling a product or forcing a behavior, mindful design shifts the locus of control to the viewer. Individuals can recognize how they are choosing to live their lives, as well as the ripple effect of their choices. Some of the methods I have discovered that designers can implement include: novelty, choice, interactivity, meaning, companions.
While this topic is so incredibly fascinating to me, I am unsure how to form this into a thesis—or if it is specific enough yet. Questions I have:
- How would I research this topic further? Would I create an artifact to generate mindfulness or research already existing designs within our culture?
- How would the results be measured? Would I need to use a mindfulness scale (I came across one in my research)?
- How would I know if individuals ultimately changed or became aware of their choices?
- Is there anyway to relate this topic to design education? While this was my initial intention, I feel like doing so might be forcing a connection and will not ultimately answer my main questions.
- Could I potentially create a framework for designers interested in moving towards a more mindful form of design?
- Or, would it be better to generate some form of mindful design and measure the impact?