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Negotiating gender and disability identities in participatory design

conference contribution
posted on 2023-06-09, 18:00 authored by Emeline BruleEmeline Brule, Katta Spiel
Standpoint theory draws our attention toward how researchers' identities shape the production of knowledge. Their standpoint depends on previous experiences and their sense of identity, as well as on their social position relative to research participants and their communities. This is particularly the case in Participatory Design (PD), which entices researchers to develop personal relationships with participants through design. However, the way identities affect Participatory Design with children has so far been neglected in research, even though previous works focus on children's and researchers' roles in the design process or encourages auto-ethnography. In this paper, we build on case studies of how identities as they relate to gender and disability shape relationships between researchers and marginalised children through Participatory Design. We show how these identities are continuously negotiated throughout the design process, and how they shape outcomes. We close by proposing an approach to systematic reflexivity on identity in participatory design.


Publication status

  • Published

File Version

  • Accepted version


C&T '19 Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Communities & Technologies - Transforming Communities


Association for Computing Machinery

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Event name

C&T 19: The 9th International Conference on Communities &Technologies - Transforming Communities

Event location

Vienna, Austria

Event type


Event date

3 -7 June, 2019



Department affiliated with

  • Engineering and Design Publications

Research groups affiliated with

  • Creative Technology Publications


ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The authors wish to thank the children and professionals involved, all members of the OutsideTheBox and Social Play Technologies projects (foremost Christopher Frauenberger, Julia Makhaeva, and Laura Scheepmaker) as well as Gilles Bailly and Wendy Mackay for their comments. Further acknowledgements go out to our queer and disabled communities within and outside of academia as they continue to provide camaraderie and support. Funding by ANR ANR-14-CE17-0018 and Austrian Science Fund P29970-N31.

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