Responsible Innovation


The School of Design is world-leading in design innovation and responsible innovation research. Our researchers use practice-based approaches working directly with organisations that span in scale from global technology corporations to sole-traders in rural locations and that cross sectors as diverse as healthcare, manufacturing and education. Across all of this difference our academics use their design expertise to develop cultures that foster innovation, embed principles of responsibility and lead to transformational outcomes – be that new policies, systems, services, products, communications, processes or behaviours.

The impact of our research is evidenced through our engagements with individual organisations and in regional, national and international initiatives. Through the Rural Design Centre and Creative FUSE North East  our academics work with partner organisations to drive sustainable growth and value creation in diverse contexts. Knowledge developed by this research group is guiding innovation in over 1000 UK SMEs through the Small Business Leadership Programme and is shaping new approaches to multi-disciplinary innovation via a social change lab, connecting academics and practitioners across 37 EU countries.

Research conducted in this space develops and applies creative approaches to: support transitions within, and influence, complex situations; establish innovation culture and practices; and to apply design in the context of resource scarcity to realise fairer futures.