Designing for user experience: academia & industry


As the importance of user experience (UX) has grown, so too have attempts to define, delimit, categorize and theorize about it. In particular, there have been emerging lines of tension in User Experience that parallel the tensions in the larger field of HCI research, particularly between approaches that emphasize the need for representations and understandings of user experience that are precise, comparable, and generalizable, and third-wave approaches that emphasize the richness of situated actions, the inseparability of mind and body, and the contextual dependency of experiences. At the same time, there are tensions between the needs of industry for immediately useful and applicable techniques and methods, and academics' emphasis on verifiable, repeatable, and theoretically grounded work. In this panel, we bring together a number of these threads to discuss the necessity of designing for user experience. How can we connect the different threads of UX work, without erasing the differences between them? Is there any value in theory of UX, and if so, to whom? What actually works in designing for a user experience?