User Knowledge Creation in Universal Design Processes

  • Elke IelegemsEmail author
  • Jasmien Herssens
  • Jan Vanrie
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 500)


Besides the need for designers to build a strong body of user knowledge within the domain of Universal Design (UD), linking knowledge about user needs and design practice is fundamental for increasing its uptake. Designers often experience difficulties when transferring user needs into inclusive design solutions. The tacit nature of user needs considerably complicates this transfer. Therefore, this paper examines how designers may create and apply knowledge on UD. Concepts from Knowledge Management are used to shed new light on designers’ knowledge creation process about user needs. By relating UD processes to Nonaka’s SECI model, an analytic framework is proposed in which four modes of developing knowledge enable us to analyse the continuous dialogue between tacit and explicit knowledge from user to designer. As such, this paper explores to which extent the SECI model offers interesting insights into designers’ knowledge creation process on user needs.


Communication Tacit and explicit knowledge SECI model Knowledge creation Architecture Design process Universal design Inclusive design Design for all 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Hasselt UniversityHasseltBelgium

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