April 12th, 2023

New Experimental Research in Design (5th NERD Conference)

Especially in unraveling times of crisis like these, new perspectives, ways of thinking and forms of action are indispensable in order to negotiate possible pathways and futures. The 5th NERD conference discusses experimental design research projects across the areas of critical AI, decolonial design and human/nonhuman design, and debates the re/positioning of the field of design research. Developed and realised by the Board of International Research in Design (BIRD) at Birkhäuser Publishing House, the 5th NERD conference (“NERD Take Five”)will be carried out in collaboration with the Berlin University of the Arts (Weizenbaum Institute) and the Technische Universität Berlin (Einstein Center Digital Future).

Day 1 / 04.05.2023

10:00 Registration and Coffee

10:30 Welcome and Introduction
Board of International Research in Design (BIRD) + UdK Berlin/TU Berlin


11:00 Learning how to be (Mis)calculated and how to (Re)calculate Algorithmic Situations
Axel Meunier / Goldsmiths College

11:45 More than Human Design Experiments to Enact Conversational AI
Iohanna Nicenboim / Delft University of Technology

12:30 - 13:30 Lunch Break


13:30 First-person-perspective as a form of inquiry in Biodesign
Barbara Pollini / Polytechnic University of Milan

14:15 Aligned arguments for the dissolution of a human ´centre´
Renata Dezso / Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design

15:15 What does a fish like? Behavioural Ecology as a Design Tool
Anja Wegner / Max Planck Institute of Animal Behavior Konstanz

16:00 - 16:30 Closing remarks of the day

From 16:30 Student exhibition and tour at the Berlin Open Lab
Gathering and networking with food and drinks

Day 2 / 05.05.2023

10:30 Coffee

10:45 Short introduction to the day


11:00 When a Tree Says No: Towards a consent framework for design-nature relationships
Franca López Barbera / Technical University of Braunschweig

11:45 Situating a Southern Urbanist Spatial Design Practice: Re-locating an approach through design research
Jhono Bennett / University College London

12:30 - 13:30 Lunch Break


13:30 Considering Design Research from the Inside Out
Joseph Lindley / Lancaster University

14:15 Flickering Landscapes. A Poetic Approach to the Relationship of Complexity and Community Through Objects and Stories
Torben Körschkes / HEFT Kollektiv Hamburg

15:00 Mining Humans and Data Extraction: The Costs of Design Research
Lauren Lin & Mayed Sahibzada / Northwestern University

15:45 - 16:30 Closing discussion with speakers and audience

Program & Registration
For further information on the full program please see:

There are no conference fees for NERD, but prior registration is required.

Conference Committee: Michelle Christensen, Florian Conradi, Uta Brandes, Tom Bieling, Sandra Groll, Ralf Michel, Wolfgang Jonas, Marc Pfaff

Conference Team / Berlin: Michelle Christensen, Florian Conradi, Ines Weigand, Berkay Soykan, Athena Grandis (Weizenbaum Institute / UdK Berlin + Einstein Center Digital Future / TU Berlin)