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A Design-led Research Project in Urban Regeneration: How Human Centred Emotional Design Can Help in Restructuring the Post-industrial Site

Zhan, X (2024) A Design-led Research Project in Urban Regeneration: How Human Centred Emotional Design Can Help in Restructuring the Post-industrial Site. Doctoral thesis, Liverpool John Moores University.

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This thesis utilises a research framework based on a double diamond model to explore design challenges in revitalising post-industrial sites. Specifically, it investigates the potential of Human-Centred Emotional Design (HCED) theory to enhance the visitor experience and contribute to the regeneration sites. To achieve the research objectives, this thesis conducts an extensive literature review encompassing existing research on urban regeneration, post-industrial transformation, and relevant theories regarding HCED and design approaches. This review aims to define the scope of HCED in this study, highlight current issues in post-industrial regeneration projects, emphasise complexities associated with converting former industrial sites, and identify potential future trends in urban regeneration efforts. Based on insights from the literature review, this thesis proposes a hypothesis that HCED theory can facilitate the regeneration of post-industrial sites at the visceral, behavioural, and reflective design levels. To test this hypothesis, the study employs diverse research methods, including fieldwork-based case studies, to gain comprehensive insights into various types of regeneration projects across diverse cultural contexts. Additionally, participatory design methods, such as focus groups, questionnaires, interviews, and analysis of digital footprints, are used to gather insights and feedback from stakeholders representing different backgrounds.The findings from the case studies and stakeholder engagement inform the development of a design framework rooted in HCED theory. This framework is further validated through the creation of a conceptual design and a comparative analysis with the existing design of Albert Dock. Both designs are recreated in virtual reality (VR) to facilitate participant comparison. Galvanic Skin Response (GSR) techniques and self-report questionnaires are employed to collect participants' emotional responses and assess their preferences. The experimental results indicate that participants generally show a greater inclination towards the conceptual design based on HCED theory, finding it more engaging across all three design levels. Consequently, it can be concluded that the HCED-based design framework proposed in this study is effective and has the potential to significantly enhance the visitor experience in post-industrial regeneration projects. This design-oriented research project addresses the emotional aspects of urban regeneration design, particularly in relation to the redevelopment of post-industrial sites. It offers a standardised, principled, and interdisciplinary design solution for the field of urban regeneration. Furthermore, the theoretical contributions of this thesis promote a comprehensive understanding of how post-industrial sites can be transformed into vibrant, habitable urban spaces that cater to the emotional and psychological needs of visitors.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Urban regeneration; Emotional design; Post-industrial Site; Design-led Research
Subjects: T Technology > TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
Divisions: Engineering
SWORD Depositor: A Symplectic
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2024 09:37
Last Modified: 06 Feb 2024 09:37
DOI or ID number: 10.24377/LJMU.t.00022476
Supervisors: Fang Bin, G, Stephen, F, Denise, L and Michael, F
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/22476
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