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Andrew Dearden 29630

Professor Andy Dearden

Professor of Interactive Systems Design


My research deals with participatory design of information and communications technology to improve lives for individuals and for communities. I also teach undergraduate modules related to software design.

  • About

    How can effective design methods, specialist design skills and good design ideas be effectively shared with people who are not specialist designers? How can specialist designers most effectively work with other people to develop new ideas, new technologies and innovations in practice that improve lives and promote justice? My work is particularly concerned with enabling people and groups who may have limited resources, or limited experience with technology, to shape systems for themselves.

    I have worked with private, public & third sector organizations in the UK, South Asia, Indonesia and Africa. With funding from the National Institute for Healthcare Research (NIHR) I worked with the Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care – South Yorkshire (CLAHRC-SY) to promote User-centred Healthcare Design (UCHD).

    I am currently advising Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust on staff participation in IT innovation.

    In the UK I have been working with community organisations and social enterprises to understand and develop innovative approaches both to designing technology and driving community development. I have worked on co-design with voluntary organisations and social enterprises, particularly in the creative and craft industries. Ideas from this work are now being used in partnership with craft producers in Indonesia.

    Together with Makerere University, Uganda, I led a British Council partnership focused on ‘Mobile Innovation & Enterprise’. In 2009, my team’s work with a co-operative of marginalized Indian farmers received an Award from the Manthan Foundation (South Asia) for its contribution to e-Enterprise & Livelihood. I have worked with SAP Research on design methods that were used to enable product traceability in West African agricultural value chains (Cashew Nuts, Shea Nuts, Cocoa). I am working with PhD students who are leading design and action research to improve sexual health education in Botswana, and sustainable agriculture in West Bengal, India.

    My current main focus is on finding ethical and effective approaches to research in Information and Communication Technologies ‘for Development’ (ICTD). How can we, a privileged few, conduct research in a way that is accountable to and relevant for the marginalised majority?

  • Teaching

    Software Engineering and Computer Science

    Case Studies in Software Design

  • Research

    • Communication and Computing Research Centre
    • Cultural Communication and Computing Research Institute

    Creating, Connecting and Sustaining Links with Indonesian Craft Industries

  • Publications

  • Postgraduate supervision

    Linus Kendall – ‘Designing ICTs for social and situated learning in sustainable agricultural development‘
    Andy Stratton – ‘Enabling Cultural Heritage Practitioners to create Interactive Digital Exhibits‘
    Nittiya Boonchum – ‘Self-Management of People with Diabetes in an Online Community in Thailand‘
    Bontle Gopolang – ‘Using ICT to enhance Sexual and Reproductive Health Education in Botswana‘

    Remi Bec (2016) – ‘Designing games to encourage physical activity by adolescents’
    Matt Dexter (2014) – ‘Open design of medical products: An Open Medical Products Methodology’
    Konstantinos Koukouletsos (2008) – ‘Empirical assessment of patterns and guidelines for web design’
    Jayne Wallace (2007) – ‘Emotionally charged: a practice-centred enquiry of digital jewellery and personal emotional significance’
    Amir Naghsh (2007) – ‘Supporting annotations in electronic paper-prototyping tools’

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