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Susanne Bødker

Personas, people and participation–challenges from the trenches of local government

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperConference articleResearchpeer-review

  • Susanne Bødker
  • Ellen Tove Christiansen, E-learning lab, Denmark
  • Tom Nyvang, IPS (Information Practice Studies), Aalborg Universitet, Denmark
  • Pär-Ola Zander, Denmark
In the early days of digital technology development, design was done 'for', 'with' or 'by' the users based on the assumption that users were real people. Today 'users' have become a component in mass-market production and are seen as 'customers', rather than people. Still designers need to address use, and personas have been introduced for this purpose. The paper uses research on user participation and research-based personas from the eGov+ project to discuss whether personas help designers engage with users. In this project, design was carried out in the domain of municipal services through involvement of clerks, management and citizens from three different municipalities. Through four cases we discuss if applying personas in participatory design settings is productive to designers' understanding of users' use situations. Does deployment of personas bring designers closer to the actual use situation? In which ways do personas help design for, with or by the users? Do personas support participatory design?
Original languageEnglish
Book seriesP D C
Pages (from-to)91-100
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2012
EventParticipatory Design Conference - Roskilde University, Roskilde, Denmark
Duration: 12 Aug 201216 Aug 2012
Conference number: 12


ConferenceParticipatory Design Conference
LocationRoskilde University

Bibliographical note

Title of the vol.: Proceedings of the 12th Participatory Design Conference: Research Papers / ed. by Kim Halskov, Hike Winschiers-Theophilus, Yanki Lee, Jesper Simonsen, Keld Bødker. ISBN 978-1-4503-0846-5

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