Hear hear! Why sound in service design should matter

Ana Kustrak Korper
Linköping University, Sweden

Vanessa Rodrigues
Linköping University, Sweden

Johan Blomkvist
Linköping University, Sweden

Stefan Holmlid
Linköping University, Sweden

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Ingår i: ServDes.2020 Tensions, Paradoxes and Plurality Conference Proceedings, 2-5th February 2021, Melbourne, Australia

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 173:36, s. 384-396

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Publicerad: 2020-12-22

ISBN: 978-91-7929-779-4

ISSN: 1650-3686 (tryckt), 1650-3740 (online)


Current tools and techniques used in everyday design practice are focused on managing the complex information of service systems primarily through visualization. The visual in methods has become a dominant norm prevalent in service design practice. In wanting to counteract the emphasis on visualization, we direct attention to qualities of sound in natural and structured form. This conceptual paper offers two important contributions. First, we propose sound as an alternative representation medium to augment design tools and methods. Second, since sound as representation is an under-explored concept, we suggest a conceptual framework. The conceptual framework introduces an understanding of sound as persistent or performative. As such, it serves as a starting point to guide the exploration of sound as a medium of representation in service design, in a way that complements existing tools and methods.


sound, visual representations, sonification, service design, auditory experience


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