The non-participatory patient

Juan Sanin
RMIT University, Australia

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

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 173:38, s. 411-421

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Publicerad: 2020-12-22

ISBN: 978-91-7929-779-4

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


This paper discusses tensions and paradoxes of codesign paradigms and calls for more plural approaches to participation in order to establish collaborations with non-participatory users. It builds on research experiences in the field of design for wellbeing to challenge assumptions about user participation and introduce the concept of ‘the non-participatory patient’. This conceptual figure is used to represent those users who do not engage with codesign activities, or those who engage, but contribute in ways that contradict expectations of designers and industry partners. It is argued that most service design projects are not able to account for the needs and preferences of non-participatory users, who are most of the time excluded from design processes and outcomes for being considered as disengaged or disobedient. These experiences make evident the need for collaborative tools, techniques and formats beyond those traditionally used in codesign, and able to bring more plurality into service design.


codesign, non-participatory patients, design for wellbeing


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