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3. Research

Research may be initiated during the scoping stage i.e. knowledge about user and abuser issues, and also with reference to generic crime science principles brought into the project from the beginning. But formal research usually only starts once the project is confirmed, and funding is in place. Design researchers, crime scientists and other researchers gather information from diverse sources. The designers are often interdisciplinary in approach, although the individual researchers in the team might not be, rather they are part of a multi-disciplinary team. We all undertake research and at staged meetings, set up before the project starts, we pool information. This may be linked to problem specific content or could be more widely connected to generative (rather than analytical) creative / realisation techniques. The project managers are important here, and so is their design experience. They start to pare down the most relevant sources of information to be used and perhaps visualised, also to link together facts and identify gaps in knowledge – sense making, starting to understand the systems to be addressed by design and imagine strategies for doing so.