Virtual and in-person co-design workshops: from alternative to complementary approaches.

A workshop at the 2022 ACM Creativity&Cognition conference.

The workshop will take place on June 20th in Venice, Italy.


The pandemic has forced us to re-think the ways we design and facilitate co-design. Activities once relying on in-person interaction, often mediated by physical artefacts (e.g. brainstorming cards, postITs, playing tokens), had to be quickly redesigned as virtual experiences – often with trade-offs involved. Can in-person and virtual workshops co-exist and complement each other?

We invite a diverse pool of participants, including technologists, educators, psychologists and sociologists to share their experiences and reflect on how to bring together virtual and in-person co-design workshops. Through discussion and hands-on sessions with physical, digital and hybrid co-design toolkits created by the organizers we aim to reflect on the following research questions:
  • What are the challenges of transforming location, methods, and toolkits that are designed for in-person workshops into the digital?
  • How the diverse affordances available in the physical and digital realms impact on the ability of co-design tools and methods to foster participants’ creativity, collaboration and learning skills.
  • How does the virtual space influence the interaction between participants, e.g. virtual breakout rooms vs. different tables or corners in a real workshop room?
  • How do workshop facilitators can to adapt to virtual and hybrid settings?


Participants shall submit a 1-page research statement with a summary of their experience in the field and topics they would like to discuss during the workshop. Participants are also invited to bring and demo their own toolkits (contact us). We also encourage young researchers with little experience to participate.
Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

Important dates

  • Research statement submission May 12th  Please contact us to attend the workshop.
  • Notification of acceptance May 15th
  • C&C Early Registration May 20th. Please register here
  • Workshop June 20th

Registration and Venue

Please email your research statement to
The workshop has a 20-participant limit.
Further details about workshop location will be announced on the ACM C&C website.

Program (tentative schedule)

Morning 10.00 - 12.00
Midday 12.30 - 14.00
Afternoon 14.30 - 16.00


Simone Mora

I am a research scientist at Senseable City Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. I hold a PhD degree from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. I’m interested in technology that blends bits and atoms and its impact on societies; I research methods for co-design and co-prototyping of future sustainable cities. I lead SCL’s CityScanner research initiative, a platform for mobile and low-cost environmental sensing. In 2018 I co-founded a startup company that develops educational toolkits.

Monica Divitini

I am professor of Cooperation Technology at the Department of Information and Computer Science, NTNU, Trondheim, Norway. I hold a PhD in Computer Science from Aalborg University, Denmark.  My research interests lie primarily in th earea of cooperation technology and technology-enhanced learning, with focus on mobile and ubiquitous technology. I am the coordinator of the TESEO Lab initiative (, focusing on issues related to technology for supporting cooperation, social interaction, and learning. I have extensive experience with the use of Tiles in educational settings, in higher and secondary education.

Albrecht Kurze

I am a Postdoc at the chair Media Informatics at Chemnitz University of Technology, Germany. My research interests are in the intersection of Ubiquitous HCI and human-centered IoT. I have a soft spot for tools and methods in the process of designing and developing technology. I organized the international IoT ideation expert workshop in Chemnitz in 2018 and facilitated a number of IoT workshops with different partners. I co-created the Loaded Dice and lastly an electronic version of the Tiles toolkit, for a remote workshop. I co-authored some of the mentioned papers on co-design methods for the IoT, including comparing them.

Arne Berger

I am a Professor of Human-Computer Interaction at HS Anhalt (the second incarnation of the Bauhaus). Currently, I am particularly interested in the design space of smart connected things and services in the context of the home. With my work I strive to support people in imagining alternative futures, to explore these futures, and to critically reflect upon them. I lived on three continents and did design research fieldwork in North America, Europe, Australia, and Asia.

Martina Mazzarello

I am a PostDoc researcher at Senseable City Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology. My background is in Spatial and service design, with the main focus on the relationship between physical, digital, and human interaction layers of spaces. As a creative strategy researcher, my method aims at ensuring that the user is put at the center of the analysis and design process, making products or services usable, viable and desirable. I’m always looking for opportunities to design research tools and methods to apply my main focus in innovative research projects aiming at urban spaces and services as dynamic systems of human actions and interactions.

Dries de Roeck

I have a background in industrial design and have been switching between the academic research and design practitioner hats ever since. I am a designer and researcher, with a strong interest in how technology impacts the day to day life of people. I hold a joint PhD degree in social sciences (K.U.Leuven) and Product Development (UAntwerpen) where I am also wrapping up my PhD research. I am a board-member of ThingsCon, a leading community of IoT practitioners in Europe. I co-organise the family-friendly hackercamp Fri3d Camp, organize technology-related activities for primary schools, and I am one of the creators of The IoT Design Kit.

Related Projects

Tiles IoT Inventor Toolkit

An activity for ages 10 and over to ideate solutions for the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. The toolkit consists of 100 ideation cards and seven design activities, which include sketching and preparing an elevator pitch. Tiles can be used in educational settings to teach topics in IoT, design, and computational thinking; as well as to aid the work of designers.

The IOT design kit

The IOT design kit is a set of design and strategy workshop tools assembled to be used by practitioners. By going through various parts of the IOT design kit, organizations are able to define their strategy and crystallize ideas related to the internet of things. What sets this set of tools apart is the flexibility in which they can be used throughout the design phase of internet-connected products and services.

Data Slots


The game entails participants trading dataset cards, ideating solutions, selecting and "investing" in other players' projects. We aim at fostering a bottom-up approach to the design of data-driven urban applications. By playing dataslots, participants will reflect on the value and privacy risks of different types of data, for different contexts of use.

Loaded Dice

Loaded Dice is a set of connected cubes equipped with sensors in one cube and actuators in the other. It makes abstract Internet of Things technology tangible and easily reconfigurable. Taken alone, it is an ideation device to support co-designing scenarios for smart connected things. Together with design methods tailored to the tool, it is used to co-design more complex storylines together with older adults, people living together, or blind students.