We ran our first Physical Journalism workshop at the Hacks/Hackers Brisbane meetup in August 2019. The materials we used are now available under a Creative Commons licence.Continue reading
What can science fiction tell us about the future of journalism? How might we think about physical news?
As part of two winter research projects we’ll be taking inspiration from sci-fi novels and physical computing to gather inspiration for imagining journalism of the future. Over six weeks, well be looking at how writers have imagined how news and information might be communicated in the future and investigating the possibilities for physical news experiences. The aim is to create some provocation material for a design workshop later in the year.
At the University of Queensland we’ve been teaching interaction design to journalism students for some time and noticed that many struggled with the uncertainty that surrounds designing. Design is about imagining possibilities and, unlike writing a news story, you often don’t know where the process will lead.
Design workbooks or journals are valuable tools in generating ideas and documenting design work. They are useful throughout the Journalism Design process but particularly in the early stages of Discover and Imagine.
Design workbooks are collections of research, materials, ideas and proposals, and play an important role in helping to understand the nature of a problem and the possibilities for solving it.
The contextual phase of our research aimed to understand how the 2016 cohort of Journalism Design students imagined the future of journalism. We were interested in how they used design methods and how and when they considered journalistic values. To do this, we studied the design projects and reflective essays created by students as part of course assessment and we interviewed some about their experience. A few themes emerged from the data: that journalistic values played an important role in the design process; that journalism needed to focus more strongly on audiences and users; and that new ideas would come from thinking big.
So far we have created two versions of the Journalism Design process. The first was developed at the end of 2016 based on data gathered from students. We presented this concept to a design workshop in early 2017 and redesigned the concept based on insights from participants.