Design for public policy: Embracing uncertainty and hybridity in mapping future research

Lucy Kimball, Catherine Durose, Ramia Maze, Liz Richardson


Addressing contemporary public policy challenges requires new thinking and new practice. Therefore, there is a renewed sense of urgency to critically assess the potential of the emerging field of ‘design for policy’. On the one hand, design ap- proaches are seen as bringing new capacities for problem-solving to public policy de- velopment. On the other, the attendant risks posed to effective and democratic policy making are unclear, partly because of a limited evidence base. The paper synthesises recent contributions in design research, policy studies, political science and democratic theory which have examined the uses of design for public policy making. Mapping out areas of debate building on studies of design from policy studies and from within de- sign research, we suggest promising directions for future crossdisciplinary research in a context of uncertainty.


Policy Design, uncertainty

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@Annual Review of Policy Design ISSN: ISSN 2291-6989