Paul Chamberlain

Professor Paul Chamberlain MdesRCA

Co-Director C3RI, Head of Art and Design Research Centre, Director of Lab4Living and Director of Design Futures


I am Professor of Design and Co-Director of interdisciplinary research group Lab4Living. I led the 2014 REF submission for UoA 34 and have been submitted to every RAE/REF since 1996. My interests lie in designing and developing tools and methods to encourage and engender social innovation and apply this with a focus on healthcare, disability and ageing. 

My work explores the multi-sensory aspects of design and the role of artefacts that define pertinent societal questions as much as present solutions. I have led major interdisciplinary projects securing over £3m of funding from diverse sources including the AHRC, EPSRC, Innovate UK, NIHR, Health Foundation, Marie Curie, British Council, EU, RSA and Royal Society NZ. I have delivered keynote and plenary lectures at leading international venues on innovation strategies and sustainable approaches to design and manufacture that have played a significant role in supporting regional post-industrial reconstruction. I am a graduate of the Royal College of Art and was co-founder and director of London based FLUX Design Ltd.

C3RI Impact Blog


I have published and exhibited widely where my research outcomes have resulted in the design of furniture, medical, healthcare, special needs and therapeutic products and systems. These have accrued two Millennium Product design awards from the Design Council UK, an Independent Living Award and an Innovative Design Award from the UK Housing Association 2017. My work is included in the permanent collection of the Victoria and Albert Museum London and the Museum of Modern Art, Prague. I was awarded a major prize in the ‘Imagining Chairs’ category of the ‘Art on Chairs’ international design competition 2013 (sponsored by the Paredes Furniture Design Pole and Institute for Design, Media and Culture Research, Portugal.

I am editor-in-chief of the Design for Health Journal published by Taylor and Francis, visiting Professor and Co-Director of the China Health Care (CHC) International Workstation at China Academy of Arts and a member of the AHRC peer review College.

My research activity ensures our PGRs are actively integrated with the Art and Design Research Centre's practice-led research agenda and facilitates opportunity for student placements at undergraduate and postgraduate.

Specialist areas of interest

Design and health
Industrial Design
Furniture Design
Interdisciplinary Research


Journal articles

El Kamali, M., Angelini, L., Caon, M., Dulake, N., Chamberlain, P., Craig, C., ... Mugellini, E. (2023). Co-designing an Embodied e-Coach With Older Adults: The Tangible Coach Journey. International Journal of Human–Computer Interaction.

Chamberlain, P. (2019). A disciplined approach to interdisciplinary working. Design for Health, 2 (2), 191-193.

Chamberlain, P., & Craig, C.L. (2017). Design for Health: reflections from the editors. Design for health, 1 (1), 3-7.

Chamberlain, P., & Yoxall, A. (2012). Of mice and men : the role of interactive exhibitions as research tools for inclusive design. The Design Journal, 15 (1), 57-78.

Burton, M., Reed, H., & Chamberlain, P. (2011). Age-related disability and bathroom use. Journal of Integrated Care, 19 (1), 37-43.

Lawton, R., Gardner, P., Green, B., Davey, C., Chamberlain, P., Phillips, P., & Hughes, G. (2009). An engineered solution to the maladministration of spinal injections. Quality & safety in health care, 18 (6), 492-495.

Chamberlain, P., & Roddis, J. (2003). Making sense : a case study of a collaborative design-led new product development for the sensorily impaired. The Design Journal, 6 (1), 40-51.

Conference papers

Langley, J., Wheeler, G., Mills, N., & Heron, N. (2020). Starworks: Politics, Power and Expertise in co-producing a research, patient, practice and industry partnership for child prosthetics. In Christer, K., Craig, C., & Chamberlain, P. (Eds.) Design 4 Health 2020, (pp. 314-322). Design 4 Health, Sheffield Hallam University:

Craig, C., & Fisher, H. (2020). Journeying through Dementia: the story of a 14 year design-led research enquiry. In Christer, K., Craig, C., & Chamberlain, P. (Eds.) Design4Health, Amsterdam, 1 July 2020 - 3 July 2020 (pp. 105-117). Lab4Living, Sheffield Hallam University:

Craig, C., & Chamberlain, P. (2020). Co-designing tools for dissemination. In Christer, K., Craig, C., & Chamberlain, P. (Eds.) Design4Health, Amsterdam, 1 July 2020 - 3 July 2020 (pp. 95-104). Lab4Living, Sheffield Hallam University

Craig, C., & Chamberlain, P. (2020). Co-designing tools for dissemination. In Christer, K., Craig, C., & Chamberlain, P. (Eds.) Design4Health, Amsterdam, 1 July 2020 - 3 July 2020 (pp. 95-104). Lab4Living, Sheffield Hallam University

Reed, H., Stanton, A., Sood, A., Joshi, P., & Rane, M. (2020). Contextual Studies to Understand the Problems and Needs of People Living with ALS/MND through Stakeholder Workshops in INDIA. In Christer, K., Craig, C., & Chamberlain, P. (Eds.) 6th International Conference on Design4Health, Amsterdam, 1 July 2020 - 3 April 2023 (pp. 123-131). Lab4Living, Sheffield Hallam University:

Fisher, H., Craig, C., & Chamberlain, P. (2019). Life Cafe - A co-designed method of engagement. The design journal: Proceedings of the 13th EAD conference University of Dundee, 10-12 April 2019, 22 (sup1), 445-461.

Chamberlain, P., Craig, C., & Dulake, N. (2019). 'Thinking through things' to support cooperative design in the development of technology to support health & wellbeing. Multi Conference on Computer Science and Information Systems, MCCSIS 2019 - Proceedings of the International Conferences on Interfaces and Human Computer Interaction 2019, Game and Entertainment Technologies 2019 and Computer Graphics, Visualization, Comp, 19-26.

Craig, C., Chamberlain, P., & Fisher, H. (2018). What do Life Cafes tell us about dying and end of life care. Design4Health: Proceedings of the 5th European Conference on Design4health.

Angelini, L., Caon, M., Mugellini, E., Abou Khaled, O., Craig, C., & Chamberlain, P. (2018). The NESTORE Project: Co-Designing a Virtual Coach with Older Adults. In CHI 2018, Monteal, Canada, 21 April 2018 - 26 April 2018.

Chamberlain, P., & Partridge, R. (2017). Co-designing co-design. Shifting the culture of practice in healthcare. The Design Journal, 20 (Sup 1), S2010-S2021.

Chamberlain, P., & Craig, C. (2017). HOSPITAbLe: Critical design and the domestication of healthcare. Research Through Design.

Chamberlain, P., & Craig, C. (2016). HOSPITAble: Domestication of healthcare. In Desmet, P., Fokkinga, S., Ludden, G., Cila, N., & van Zuthem, H. (Eds.) Celebration & Contemplation: Proceedings of the Tenth International Conference on Design and Emotion, Amsterdam, September 27-30, 2016, (pp. 553-557). Amsterdam: Design & Emotion Society:

Chamberlain, P., & Craig, C. (2016). A design primer for the domestication of health technologies. In Lloyd, P., & Bohemia, E. (Eds.) Proceedings of DRS2016: Design + Research + Society - Future-Focused Thinking, (pp. 1499-1514). London: Design Research Society:

Craig, C., Gubler, U., & Chamberlain, P. (2016). Exhibition in a box : uncovering occupational identity through objects. In 40th College of Occupational Therapists Annual Conference, Harrogate, 28 June 2016 - 30 June 2016.

Craig, C., & Chamberlain, P. (2016). Digital health : promoting or preventing access to care? In 1st COTEC-ENOTHE Congress, Galway, Ireland, 15 June 2016 - 19 June 2016.

Chamberlain, P., Craig, C., & Dexter, M. (2016). InTacT: Insights into Telehealth and Care Technologies. In Langdon, P., Lazar, J., Heylighen, A., & Dong, H. (Eds.) Designing around people : CWUAAT 2016, (pp. 85-94). Switzerland: Springer:

Chamberlain, P., & Craig, C. (2013). Engagingdesign - Methods for collective creativity. In Human-Computer Interaction. Human-Centred Design Approaches, Methods, Tools, and Environments, (pp. 22-31). Springer Berlin Heidelberg:

Yoxall, A., Heller, B., & Chamberlain, P. (2011). Oom Bop Bop Good Vibrations: the use of sensory feedback to create motion inhibition. In Include 2011, Royal College of Art, London, 18 April 2011 - 20 April 2011.

Chamberlain, P. (2010). Horses, elephants and camels… : challenges and barriers to interdisciplinary user-centred design research. Proceedings of DESIGN 2010, the 11th International Design Conference, Dubrovnik, Croatia, 163-172.

Chamberlain, P., & Roddis, J. (2005). Regenerate: a case study of a collaborative design research led new product development. In Joining forces: Design research, industries and a new interface for competiveness, University of Art and Design, Helsinki, 22 September 2005 - 24 September 2005.

Chamberlain, P.M., & Bowen, S.J. Designers’ Use of the Artefact in Human-centred Design. In Designing Accessible Technology, (pp. 65-74). Springer-Verlag:

Bowen, S.J., & Chamberlain, P.M. Engaging the Ageing: Designing Artefacts to Provoke Dialogue. In Designing Inclusive Futures, (pp. 35-44). Springer London:

Book chapters

Kiernan, L., de Barros, A.C., Cotrim, T., & Chamberlain, P. (2022). The Future of Design for Health and Wellbeing. In Springer Series in Design and Innovation. (pp. 195-202). Springer International Publishing:

El Kamali, M., Angelini, L., Caon, M., Andreoni, G., Dulake, N., Chamberlain, P., ... Mugellini, E. (2021). Building Trust and Companionship in e-Coaching Through Embodiment. In Digital Health Technology for Better Aging. (pp. 195-204). Springer International Publishing:

Chamberlain, P., Craig, C., & Dulake, N. (2021). Found in translation: innovative methods of co-design in the development of digital systems for promoting healthy aging. In Andreoni, G., & Mambretti, C. (Eds.) Digital Health Technology for Better Aging. A Multidisciplinary Approach. (pp. 29-52). Cham, Switzerland: Springer:

Craig, C., & Chamberlain, P. (2017). Designing health technology: the ethical dimension. In Dastbaz, M., Arabnia, H., & Akhgar, B. (Eds.) Technology for smart futures. (pp. 289-301). London: Springer:

Chamberlain, P., Mawson, S., & Wolstenholme, D. (2017). Services: Service design in chronic health. In Tsekleves, E., & Cooper, R. (Eds.) Design for health. (pp. 216-240). Abingdon: Routledge:

Chamberlain, P., & Dieng, P. (2013). How does it feel? Tactile interpretations of visual symbols. In Ng, A.W.Y., & Chan, A.H.S. (Eds.) Signs and symbols for workplace and public use. (pp. 147-162). Hauppauge, New York: Nova Science Publishers:

Chamberlain, P., Reed, H., Burton, M., & Mountain, G. (2011). Future bathroom: A study of user-centred design principles affecting usability, safety and satisfaction in bathrooms for people living with disabilities. In Research and development work relating to assistive technology 2010-11. (pp. 28-29). Department of Health:

Chamberlain, P., Reed, H., Burton, M., & Mountain, G. (2011). ‘Future Bathroom’, What to make? Or How to Make? Challenges in meeting sustainable needs. In Bartolo, H. (Ed.) Sustainable Intelligent manufacturing. (pp. 777-784). Portugal: IST Press:

Chamberlain, P., & Dieng, P. (2011). Looking Good, Feeling Good – Tac Map: a navigation system for the blind. In The role of inclusive design in making social innovation happen. RCA:

Bowen, S., & Chamberlain, P. (2008). Engaging the ageing: designing artefacts to provoke dialogue. In Langdon, P., Clarkson, J., & Robinson, P. (Eds.) Designing inclusive futures. (pp. 35-44). London: Springer:

Chamberlain, P. (2007). Beyond branding : how design research through engagement with industry can establish status within the academy and provide products with more meaning and significance. In Collina, L., & Scullica, F. (Eds.) Designing designers : unbranded design for for new user expectations, in East and West. (pp. 35-40). Milan: Edizioni POLI.Design

Chamberlain, P., Gardner, P., & Lawton, R. (2007). Shape of things to come. In Michel, R. (Ed.) Design research now - essays and selected projects. (pp. 99-116). Birkhaeuser-Springer:

Chamberlain, P. (1992). Oyster Stool seating for Heathrow Airport. In Puttman, A. (Ed.) International Design Yearbook: 1992. London: Thames and Hudson


Barclay, S., Clarkson, J., Craig, C., Chamberlain, P., & Fisher, H. (2020). Marie Curie Design to Care: Phase 1 Final Report. Marie Curie.

Chamberlain, P., Craig, C., & Dulake, N. (2019). APPENDIX WP7.2 transferability of participants perspectives to technologists. NESTORE.

Chamberlain, P., Craig, C., & Dulake, N. (2018). Transferability of participants perspectives to technologists. NESTORE.

Chamberlain, P., Craig, C., & Dulake, N. (2018). D7.3 Report on End-User Improvements for prototypes. NESTORE.

Chamberlain, P., Craig, C., & Dulake, N. (2018). NESTORE D7.1 Needs, Values and Suggestions to Co-Design. NESTORE.

Chamberlain, P., Reed, H., Burton, M., Yoxall, A., Akan, E., Can, A., ... Çakırusta, A. (2017). Inclusive bathroom design as we age. Turkey: Vitra.

Chamberlain, P., Wolstenholme, D., Dexter, M., & Seals, E. (2015). The state of the art of design theory and practice in health : an expert-led review of the extent of the art and design theory and practice in health and social care. Sheffield: Sheffield Hallam University.

Theses / Dissertations

O'Connor, E.F. (2017). Re-imagining patient narrative:exploring patient experience of genetic medicine through art practice. (Doctoral thesis). Supervised by Kivland, S., Shaw, B., & Chamberlain, P.

Bec, R. (2015). Utilising games and design-research methodology to promote physical activity among adolescents. (Doctoral thesis). Supervised by Dearden, A., Chamberlain, P., & Copeland, R.

Ramli, S.H. (2014). Mocking up : Strategies to engage expert users in designerly thinking. (Doctoral thesis). Supervised by Rust, C., Chamberlain, P., & Bowen, S.

Walters, P.J. (2005). Knowledge in the making: Prototyping and human-centred design practice. (Doctoral thesis). Supervised by Chamberlain, P., Fisher, T., Press, M., & Tomes, A.


Chamberlain, P. (2020). Rest of your Life. [Steel and bronze].

Chamberlain, P. (2018). HOSPITAbLe. [Mixed Media- Furniture].

Chamberlain, P. (2011). Exhibition in a box. [Artefact].

Chamberlain, P., & Christian, P. (1986). RIB chair. [metal].

Chamberlain, P., & Dulake, N. (n.d.). NESTORE tangible coach. [Mixed media _ electronics].


Chamberlain, P. (1994). Rib Chair. Kyoto National Museum of Modern Art.

Chamberlain, P. (2011). engagingaging. Building Centre.

Chamberlain, P. (2022). New Domestic Quotidian. [Wood]. Venice Architectural Biennale.

Dulake, N., Chamberlain, P., Soreny, C., & Vickers, E. (2023). Re-imagining the 100 year life. [Projection, film, photography]. Somerset House, London.


Craig, C., Fisher, H., & Chamberlain, P. (2019). Life Cafe. [Various: photographs, artefacts, written text].


Langley, J., Wolstenholme, D., Craig, C., & Chamberlain, P. (2015). EngagingAging : meaningful participation for older people in research and innovation. Presented at: Innovation Learning Network Ageing Series (part of the Virtual Thursday programme), 2015

Other publications

Chamberlain, P. (2003). Non-Luer medical connection system. Sheffield Hallam University:

Other activities

Editor-in-Chief, Design for Health Journal (Taylor & Francis)
Visiting Professor and Co-Director of the China Health Care (CHC) International Workstation at China Academy of Arts
Member of Peer review college AHRC
Member of the CHEAD
Member of the Design Theme Advisory Group AHRC (2017/18)
Jury member, Design Bloc, Prague, Czech Republic (2017)
Reviewer for Design Journal, Ashgate Publishing, UK
Reviewer for Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council UK
Reviewer for Leverhume Trust, UK
Reviewer for Journal of Systems and software, Elsevier.
Reviewer for Journal of Applied Ergonomics
Reviewer for Qatar National Research Fund.
Reviewer for BMJ - Supportive and Palliative Care 2017
Arts Panel member for Funacao para a Ciencia e a Technologia (FCT), Ministry of Technology in Portugal 2014 and 2017
International jury member for the 2010 International Bicycle Design Competition organised by the Cycling & Health Tech R&D Centre and sponsored by the Department of Industrial Technology, Ministry of Economic Affairs, Taiwan.
Member of Scientific committee, SIM, Conference, Polytechnic Institute of Leiria, Portugal 2013
Expert advisor for AHRC funded project ‘Multi sensory environments in Dementia care, the role of design’, Kingston University 2013/14
International jury member for the Design Turkey Industrial Design Awards 2014. Organised by the International Societies of Industrial Design Turkey
AHRC advisor Design to Care Programme 2017/19
Jury member Design Bloc, Prague, Czech Republic 2017
Swiss National Science Foundation 2017
Member of Scientific Committee, CWUAAT Cambridge University 2017

Postgraduate supervision

The reclamation of patient narrative: Interrogating patient experience of genetic conditions through film

Doctoral researchers completed

I have examined PhDs at the following institutions: Royal College of Art, Cambridge University, University of Brighton, Cardiff Met University, University of Ireland, Loughborough University, University of Lancaster, University of Dundee, Swinburne University AU.

Knowledge in the Making – The role of making in creating knowledge

A critical artefact methodology

Investigating Participatory Design Methods for Collaborative Development of Surgical Tools

Creating Games to Promote Physically Active Lifestyles among Adolescents aged 11-14

Cancel event

Are you sure you want to cancel your place on Saturday 12 November?