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Caradt at Design Research Society conference 2024

Caradt is pleased to announce that Simone van den Broek and Alwin de Rooij from the Situated Art and Design research group have presented their innovative research at the Design Research Society Conference 2024 in Boston. The theme of the conference, “Resistance, Recovery, Reflection, Reimagination,” brought together global designers and researchers to explore cutting-edge methodologies for contemporary challenges.

At the conference, Simone presented the potential of mycelium bio-composite as a sustainable insulation material in her paper: “Material Experience and User Acceptance of Mycelium Bio-Composite Insulation in the Construction Industry Through Interdisciplinary Co-Design.” arrowDespite its impressive thermal and acoustic properties, mycelium remains unfamiliar to many. Through an interdisciplinary workshop, Simone found that stakeholders had a positive view of mycelium, appreciating its sustainability and lightweight properties. However, they stressed the need for recognition and certification in the European market for broader acceptance.


This paper is part of the larger Mythic Materials project, which focuses on developing mycelium bio-composites for construction. The project, in collaboration with MNEXT, aims to create a market-ready, circular, and biodegradable insulation material. For more details, read the whitepaper on the Mythic Materials projectarrow and visit the project pagearrow.


Alwin de Rooij presented the paper titled “Expecting the Unexpected: A Review of Surprise in Design Processesarrow.” This research, conducted in collaboration with Michael Mose Biskjaer from Aarhus University (Department of Digital Design and Information Studies), delves into the role of surprise in driving creativity and innovation in design. Traditionally seen as an emotional user response, Alwin’s review explores surprise as a crucial element within design processes, emphasizing its potential to enhance innovation through unexpected outcomes. By examining two decades of design research, Alwin identified key themes such as error management, process-product interplay, and the relevance of surprise in creativity support tools.

‘‘Understanding how creativity and imagination emerge from interactions with our environment will lead to improved innovation processes, tools and technologies.’’

Alwin de Rooij is Associate Professor in Situated Art and Design at the Avans Centre of Applied Research for Art, Design and Technology (Caradt), and Assistant Professor in Creativity Research in the department of Communication and Cognition, Tilburg University.

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‘The ultimate goal is to provide people with the information, skills and tools that enable them to improve the quality of their daily lives.’

Simone van den Broek is a researcher within the Situated Art and Design research group, and a tutor for the Communication & Multimedia Design programme at Avans University of Applied Sciences in Den Bosch. 

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Research Group: Situated Art and Design

Living in cities developed around data and acting within the inscrutable structure of our techno-society demands art and design that can help understand how we relate to these rapidly changing surroundings and to reflect on that relationship. The research group Situated Art and Design responds to this exigency by fostering a situated turn in art and design through a diverse portfolio of interdisciplinary research projects in partnership with academic and cultural partners, as well as with government and industry.

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