Configuring the user as everybody: gender and design cultures in information and communication technologies

Nelly E.J. Oudshoorn, E. Rommes, M. Stienstra

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    232 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Based on two case studies of the design of electronic communication networks developed in the public and private sector, this article explores the barriers within current design cultures to account for the needs and diversity of users. Whereas the constraints on user-centered design are usually described in macrosociological terms, in which the user–technology relation is merely understood as a process of the inclusion or exclusion of users in design, the authors suggest that it is important to adopt a semiotic approach. Moreover, they argue that we need to take into account the gender identity of designers to understand how design practices in ICT prioritize male users. The article shows how configuring the user as “everybody” and the use of the “I-methodology” are important constraints in the development of technologies that aim to reach users in all their diversity.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)30-63
    Number of pages34
    JournalScience, technology & human values
    Volume29
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2003

    Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Configuring the user as everybody: gender and design cultures in information and communication technologies'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this