Research

HEAD – Genève organises its research activities (research projects, conferences, publications, exhibitions, colloquiums and round-table discussions) in the Research Institute for Art and Design (IRAD). Led by a small team that coordinates and manages the administrative side, these activities are developed within the school’s various courses, based on the initiatives of the teaching staff. This proximity between teaching and research ensures constant discussions that gradually include MA students in a research dynamic that some might pursue with postgraduate studies. 

See all research projects 

Head of Department

Assistants

Network of Expertise in Design and Visual Arts – HES SO

General information
HEAD – Genève is a member of the Network of Expertise in Design and Visual Arts (RCDAV) of HES SO. The network’s scientific committee, led by HES SO’s Board of the Faculty of Design and Visual Arts defines, coordinates and manages the research activities on a regional level in Western Switzerland. It consists of the six schools which are members of the Board of the Faculty of Design and Visual Arts: The Conservation-Restoration Department of the Haute Ecole Arc (HECR Arc) in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Lausanne University of Art and Design (ECAL), the Ecole cantonale d’art du Valais (ECAV) in Sierre and HEAD – Genève, Geneva School of Art and Design. Together with the Board, the scientific committee defines the strategy, goals and content of research and training programmes in Design and Visual Arts in Western Switzerland, drawing on the expertise of professional, economic, cultural and institutional stakeholders. 

 

Organisation

The scientific committee of the RCDAV consists of six members appointed for two years. 
A Network coordinator: Anne-Catherine Sutermeister (HEAD – Genève)
AR&D Coordinators: Alain Antille (ECAV), Davide Fornari (ECAL), Agnès Gelbert Miermon (HECR Arc)
A HEAD – Genève representative: Daniel Sciboz
An ECAL representative: Patrick Keller
 

Missions

In global terms, the RCDAV ensures complementarity between projects and consistency in their general strategy. It contributes to improving the research skills of its member schools. It supports projects that help consolidate research teams and develop the acquisition and transmission of new knowledge and skills in emerging fields. The RCDAV actively promotes collaboration between institutions, skills groups and researchers from universities, and favours cross-disciplinary projects. 

Finally, the RCDAV provides financial support for research. Indeed, on a regional level, researchers from member schools apply to the HES SO Fund, which is managed by the RCDAV. It finances research projects in design and visual arts and project proposals (enabling students to draft an SNF project).

- Deadlines to submit projects have been set for 1 March and 1 October. 
- Applicants may submit one project and one proposal at a time. 

Research at national level

Researchers have several possibilities to support the research effort: projects, publications, colloquiums, international workshops as well as career development. 
For more information, please visit the website of the University of Geneva, which gives an overview of the various types of support (https://www.unige.ch/recherche/fr/financement/) as well as the HES SO’s AR&D pages at http://www.hes-so.ch/fr/recherche-hes-so-31.html 
In the field of art and design, some foundations may also be willing to support research (www.promotionculturelle.ch). 

At national level, researchers at HEAD-Genève will mainly apply to two support funds:

- The Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF) is one of the main institutions that promotes research in Switzerland. The SNF’s main activity consists in assessing project requests. The SNF includes five promotional tools: 
Research projects
Careers (it supports young talent, from PhD dissertation to teaching assistant, for example through study abroad scholarships) 
Programmes 
Infrastructure (funding for research infrastructure when it is vital to the implementation of research projects) 
Scientific communication (publications, meetings, seminars, conferences and communication projects) 

- The Commission for Technology and Innovation (CTI), the Swiss Confederation's innovation promotion agency, also provides significant support. The CTI specifies three areas of support: 
Encouragement for projects: In this context, the CTI co-finances joint research and development projects between companies, public bodies, non-profit entities and public research institutions
The creation of start-ups: The CTI makes researchers aware of entrepreneurship and provides support to create a company or set up an organisation 
The transfer of knowledge and technology (promotion of the transfer of knowledge and techniques between universities and companies in order to foster innovation projects and start-up ideas.

For project application procedures, please contact Anne-Catherine Sutermeister.

Research networks in Switzerland

Backed by teachers who enjoy the intellectual challenge, research projects began in the early 2000s. In 2003, the heads of Swiss design schools founded the Swiss Design Network (SDN), followed by the Society of Artistic Research (SAR) in 2010 and finally, the Swiss Artistic Research Network (SARN) in 2011. 

Swiss Design Network (SDN), Swiss competence network of design research, secretariat located in Bern

Society of Artistic Research (SAR), Non-profit organisation for artistic research, based in Zurich

Swiss Artistic Research Network (SARN), Platform for the coordination and communication of artistic research activities of Switzerland’s art schools, secretariat located in Geneva. 
 

PhD programmes at Art and Design Universities
Conditions

At the moment, universities of applied sciences, a category which includes universities of art and design, cannot award doctorates. However, various options are possible to support the writing of a PhD dissertation at a School of Art. On one hand, partnerships with Swiss universities may be developed, while on the other, collaborations with art schools abroad that are authorised to award PhDs may also be encouraged. In order for these theses to be developed in close coordination with HEAD – Genève’s specific teaching and topics, the school encourages the development of an official partnership between an organisation—foreign or Swiss—authorised to award a doctorate and a professorship at HEAD.

HEAD – EPFL Convention

In 2017, HEAD – Genève established a convention with the EPFL’s Doctoral Programme in Architecture and Sciences of the City (EDAR) in Lausanne, giving assistants hired at HEAD on a part-time basis the opportunity to do their thesis within the context of the EDAR. 

The research coordinator is available for all matters pertaining to this subject : Anne-Catherine Sutermeister 

Dissertation projects by Felicien Goguey

Technical systems and new technologies in a sociology of surveillance by Félicien Goguey

Beginning of the dissertation: March 2017
Scheduled end of the dissertation: March 2021
Co-direction: Prof. Nicolas Nova (HEAD – Genève), Prof. Frédéric Kaplan (EPFL)

In his dissertation, Félicien Goguey focuses on the surveillance conducted on networks (Internet and mobile phones) by governments and on monitored areas and their users. Indeed, the new systems used by intelligence services redefine the areas of surveillance and raise new questions in that field of research, such as: What are these technical systems and what new challenges do they raise in a sociology of surveillance? How are they used and what imagery develops around them? How do these systems affect the way networks are used and the areas in which they are set up? How is the data collected used by such systems?
Based on the study of legal documents and catalogues of systems published by companies specialised in surveillance, Félicien Goguey aims to devise and develop a series of practical experiments in design that include interactive installations and the public in various venues at different times. Initially the experiment with these installations and systems aims to raise the awareness of individuals of the presence of these new forms of surveillance. Secondly, thanks to the analysis of the data collected from the user experiment, the complexity of interactions between users, networks, areas and surveillance can be further explored. Data acquisition is based directly on the systems developed as well as on interviews conducted with the public. The development of the installations and systems inevitably includes a share of speculation, given the discretion inherent to the field.
By revealing the usually imperceptible connections between monitoring devices and users, Félicien Goguey attempts through his dissertation to assess the degree of perception of such devices and their impact on network users and monitored areas.

Dissertation projects by Oliver Graney

Looking Back to the Future : The symbiosis between design and science fiction and it’s role in predicting (and manifesting) our collective future by Oliver Graney

Beginning of the dissertation : April 2017
Scheduled end of the dissertation : April 2021
Co-direction HEAD : Professor Alexandra Midal
Co-direction EPFL : Professor Luca Pattaroni


Since the dawn of the Industrial Revolution, design and science fiction have developed alongside one another, and yet always with a keen eye toward what is yet to come. Since William Morris’ publication of News from Nowhere in 1887, designers and science fiction authors have borrowed from one another in conceiving and planning the objects and systems of our collective future. Over a century of shared interest has resulted in certain features that have come to populate both the work of designers and science fiction authors.

Certain fantastical inventions and designs have become tropes of futurism. Design features like the travelator, the self-piloted automobile, the fully automated smart city, and others appear in science fiction stories, films, and in the utopian propositions of designers and architects. These features are now staples of our collective vision of the future partly because of the central role they played in design projects like the Futurama pavilion at the 1939 World’s Fair and the Futurama II pavilion at the 1964 World’s Fair, and various science fiction stories.

While these projects have been celebrated for their prescience, I am looking to problematize the relationship between the appearance of these tropes in sci-fi literature and film and their appearance in designers’ utopian plans. This dissertation investigates the relationship between science fiction and design, their predictive capabilities, and the nature of the feedback loop that exists between the two. How can  science fiction be understood as a tool for designers? Has science fiction’s overwhelming focus on technology and automation contributed to the fetish for innovation in design?

 

Links

ELIA, The European League of Institutes of the Arts, independent network organisation for higher arts education, based in The Netherlands

Cumulus International Association of Universities and Colleges of Art, Design and Media, global association for art and design research and education, secretariat located in Finland

Design Research Society, international and multidisciplinary learned society for design research community, registered in Scotland

Deustche Gesellschaft für Design theorie und forschung e.V., nonprofit organization for design issues, based in Berlin

European artistic research (EARN), share and exchange knowledge and experience in artistic research, registered in Helsinki and Dublin

Institut für Künstlerische Forschung, independent research institute, based in Berlin

Research Through Design (RDT), Conference series website

Organisation/networks

ELIA, The European League of Institutes of the Arts, independent network organisation for higher arts education, based in The Netherlands

Cumulus International Association of Universities and Colleges of Art, Design and Media, global association for art and design research and education, secretariat located in Finland

Design Research Society, international and multidisciplinary learned society for design research community, registered in Scotland

Deustche Gesellschaft für Design theorie und forschung e.V., nonprofit organization for design issues, based in Berlin

European artistic research (EARN), share and exchange knowledge and experience in artistic research, registered in Helsinki and Dublin

Institut für Künstlerische Forschung, independent research institute, based in Berlin

Research Through Design (RDT), Conference series website

Reviews/newspapers

ART&DESIGN 

Journal of Art and Research, revue de recherche en ligne d'art et de culture contemporaine, Glasgow School of Art, Angleterre

JAR: Journal for artistic research, revue de recherche en ligne d'art et de design, Universités suisses, Suisse

Working papers in art and design, revue de recherche en art et en design, Université d'Hertfordshire, Angleterre

Parse Journal Platform for Artistic Research, Sweden
 

ART

Central Asian Journal of Art Studies, revue de recherche d'art et de culture contemporaine,Т. Zhurgenov Kazakh National Academy of Arts, Kazakhstan

Crossings, journal de recherche d'art et technologie, Trinity College, Dublin, Irlande

Ctheory, revue de recherche international de théorie, technologie et culture, Université de Victoria, Victoria, Canada

Drain magazine, revue de recherche en ligne sur la théorie et la praxis dans la culture contemporaine, Universités américaines et canadiennes

e-flux journal, revue de recherche en ligne sur l'art et la culture contemporaine, New York, Etats-Unis 

emaj: online journal of art, revue de recherche en ligne d'histoire de l'art, Melbourne, Australie

Invisible culture: an electronic journal for visual culture, revue de recherche en ligne sur l'art et la culture contemporaine, Université de Rochester, Etats-Unis

Seismopolite: journal of art and politics, revue de recherche d'art et de culture contemporaine, Oslo, Norvège
 

DESIGN

Communication Design, Interdisciplinary and Graphic Design Research, revue de recherche en design et communication visuelle, Montréal, Québec, Canada

Design Issues, revue de recherche en design, MIT - Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Etats-Unis

Design studies, revue de recherche en design, Université anglaises, Angleterre

International Journal of design, revue internationale de recherche en design, Universités internationales, National Taiwan University, Taipei, De Technische Universiteit Eindhoven, Eindhoven

Journal of Design Research, revue de recherche en design, Universités internationales

Journal of Design and Science, revue de recherche en ligne en design et science, MIT Media Lab, Cambridge, Etats-Unis

Journal of the Design Studies Forum, revue de recherche en design, Universités américaines, New York, Etats-Unis 

La revue du design, revue de design, Paris, France

Sciences du design, revue de recherche en design, PUF, Universités suisses et françaises, Nantes, Nîmes, Genève

The Journal of Sustainable Product Design, revue de recherche en ligne en design, Dordrecht, Pays-Bas

Azimut, réflexion et d'échanges sur les enjeux actuels du design, par les étudiants du post-diplôme de l'École des beaux-arts de Saint-Etienne, France
 

DESIGN/FASHION

Fashion Practice, The Journal of Design, Creative Process and the Fashion Industry, revue de recherche en mode, Universités internationales, London College of Fashion, Londres, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis

Textile Research Journal, revue de recherche en textile et mode, Universités internationales, Los Angeles, Londres, New Delhi, Singapour et Washington DC


UPLOADING DOCUMENTS

Les défis de la recherche en Art et en Design en Suisse. Un cas d’école : la HEAD – Genève.

Article sur la Recherche HES dans la tribune de Genève

Qualité d’auteur des publications scientifiques – Analyse et recommandations

L’intégrité dans la recherche scientifique - Principes de bases et procédures