Transcending the theory-practice problem of technology
journal contributionposted on 1992-01-01, 00:00 authored by Yoram Reich, Carnegie Mellon University.Engineering Design Research Center.
Abstract: "Design activities are fundamental to technological progress. Current design research holds tight to positivism, abandoned and critically opposed to [sic] by philosophers, mostly those outside the U.S. Maintaining the positivist view when conducting research leads to significant deficiencies in the quality of research, and to problems in transferring research results to practice. In spite of significant research efforts, the improvement of practice is slow. This improvement, in turn, does not necessarily reflects [sic] the diffusion of research results into practice, but rather, the development of ideas by practitioners. This paper analyzes this theory-practice problem of technology from practical, cultural, and philosophical perspectives.It proposes a research methodology of design and briefly shows how this methodology can shed light on some problems related to technology. The paper also discusses the fundamental role of design in technology, thereby viewing the research methodology proposed as a methodology for studying some aspects of technology."