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Ongoing Research

Home > Methodology > Ongoing Research
This page highlights on going research topics on design evaluation and design voting.

Design Competition Voting System - How to derive real criteria weights for a design competition using the preference order of jury votes
Abstract: In order to have intertemporally comparable results for design competitions (where results of one your could be compared to the results of a prior year), we should focus on criteria based voting with weights assigned to each criteria. However, till now, in most design awards predetermined weights for criteria have been used and these predetermined weights are not based on solid backgrounds; they were selected with simple reasoning (via indications by existing jury members). On the other hand, by using reserve-engineering of preference orders, we could derive the real criteria weight that jurors use when reflecting in action during the voting process of a design competition. To do so, it could be possible to run a true design competition where the jury is asked to vote twice, first being the preference order of designs and second being the criteria based voting. We aim to gather following information: 1. What are the real criteria weights that are used by jury members when they are voting designs. 2. What are other possible design award evaluation criteria that should be considered when voting for designs in specific categories. 3. How can we use the real criteria weights derived by analysis of the jury votes to improve the voting processes of design competitions. Finally, we would like to run a survey to collect further information about the fundamental rules that govern the voting mechanism in a design competition. This article explains how we could design an established, fair and founded voting system for a design competition. The survey is already integrated to the mechanism. We decide to keep this research question open, as we also wish to observe the change of criteria as trends come and go. Full Article and Discussion for this topic is available here.

Assigning a Quality Score for Design Competitions - What are the core qualities that makes a design competition good, fair and effective
Abstract: Design Competitions have become a common way to gain fame and authority in the last years, thus the demand for design competitions skyrocketed, with increased demand and high-rates of participation, number of competitions also increased exponentially and finally equilibrium was reached. However, in this case, we now have around 400+ International design competitions organized each year, plus tens of thousands of local competitions are being organized throughout the world. With increased amount of choices, the designer now faces a decision to choose which competitions to participate and which not. This created a demand for a quick way to identify which competitions are worth designers’ time and which competitions should the designer stay away from. However, due to enormous amount of information available (submission criteria, terms and conditions, call fiche, brief etc) of each competition, designers usually read only the brief and continue with submissions. It happens in many cases that the designer might even lose rights to her own design by just participating in some competitions. In addition to this, there exists some competitions that are absolute loss of time, but on the other hand we also see that some very good design competitions such as with respected jury, tradition and organizers are also lost in this ocean. This article explores how we could identify good design competitions by assigning a score to specific criteria. We keep this research question open as we are open for the jury insights especially, we wish to know, if you have any ideas or reflections on how a design competition or award could be organized in a more fair, effective and righteous way. Read more about this discussion here.

Importance of Design Presentations - Real weights of presentations on the evaluation of submissions during a design competition
Abstract: It is common knowledge that the presentation of a project is somewhat important to be successful in a design competition, but what is the extend of this hypothesis? If you were to check evaluation criteria of many design competitions in detail, you would figure out that only a trivial weight is assigned (or indicated) for the quality of presentation (usually 5% in the score sheet) on average when judging your design, and in some cases the presentation might even not be considered as a check point. However, research shows that jurors are indeed effected by the entry presentations significantly; our studies on the topic shows that “the less the juror has expertise in a topic, the more the jury member is inclined to vote on beauty of presentation and object than functional or engineering properties.” Which means that especially non-expert jury members have a positive bias when voting entries that are presented more beautiful. Furthermore, another important insight is as follows, “regardless of jurors’ expertise, the presentation quality effects the overall decision much more than weight indicated in evaluation criteria” – the implication of this result is that, the presentation has a significant effect on evaluation, and more than what is written or agreed on. Finally, the last insight is that “the amount of information provided by a participant regarding their design had statistical importance on entries, especially when the entries are more advanced products or services that implement a deeper thinking or new technology”, which implies that some entries could simply get a better score because they provide more information about their work. We name all these 3 results as “positive presentation bias” and we designed an advanced submission optimizer, preliminary checks and implemented a very bureaucratic entry evaluation guidelines that guide the participants at each step of their entries to remove the “positive (in many cases negative) presentation bias” by 1. Ensuring entries are presented in a uniform matter. 2. Ensuring entries are presented completely. 3. Ensuring all entries are presented beautifully. – We think that this methodology, significantly decreases the “presentation bias” and results with “voting of entries on their intrinsic qualities rather presentations” which makes the competition results more fair. We keep this discussion open and open to your suggestions on how to improve the voting system further. For a short essay and further discussion visit this page.

 

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