Research in Design Thinking at the Open University has coalesced around the Design Thinking Research Symposia series; international gatherings which have grown steadily into a well-defined community since the early 1990s.  DTRS5 and DTRS7 were both co-organised by Peter Lloyd and resulted in influential edited books and special issues of the high impact journals Design Studies and CoDesign.

Thematically Design Thinking is concerned both with individual cognitive activity during the process of design as well as thinking 'projected' into the world in the form of talk and discussion.  It is thus quite differently defined when compared to recent definitions of the term which have tended to focus on the application of design methods in business contexts. 


Design Thinking Research Symposium 7 (DTRS7) 

History of the DTRS


Lloyd, P.A., McDonnell, J. (eds) (2010) About: Designing - Analysing Design Meetings, Taylor and Francis.

Lloyd, P.A. (2009) Ethical Imagination and Design, Design Studies, 30, pp 154-168.

Lloyd, P.A., McDonnell, J., Cross, N. (2007) Analysing Design Behaviour: The Design Thinking Research Symposia Series, in Proceedings of 2nd International Association of Design Research Societies (IASDR) Conference, 12th-15th November, Hong Kong.

Lloyd, P.A. , Christiaans, H.M.C.M.  (eds.) (2001)  Designing in Context: Proceedings from Design Thinking Research Symposium 5, Delft University Press, Delft, The Netherlands.

PhD Students

Andreas Peter