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Dr Chris McGinley


  • Chris McGinley
  • Area

    The Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design


    Research Fellow, The Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design

  • Chris is an award winning people-centred designer, researcher and writer. He has worked in the field of inclusive design and social innovation for over a decade, on a broad range of projects that have been successfully commercialised, exhibited and disseminated internationally. His research interests explore design ethnography and the role of empathy towards creating people-centred design proposals that improve lives.

    Chris is currently a Senior Research Associate and Project Manager at the Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design, where he plays a lead role in the Age & Diversity Research Space. At the Centre he has worked on a range of projects that include: medication packaging to address compliance issues with GlaxoSmithKline; cooker redesigns with a focus on the elderly for Osaka Gas, Japan; domestic lighting design for people with low vision, for the Thomas Pocklington Trust; landscape design for adults with Autism for the Kingwood Trust; community connection projects for BlackBerry. He is a visiting lecturer/tutor at Brighton University, Brunel University, Imperial College and the Royal College of Art, and frequently delivers external education and workshops to academia, industry, government and within international design settings.

  • Biography

  • Chris is a graduate of Strathclyde University where he completed a Masters degree in Product Design Engineering. He then went on to study at the Royal College of Art/Imperial College where he completed a Masters degree in Industrial Design Engineering. After a year working freelance in concept development and communication for brands such as Becks and One Little Indian, Chris joined the Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design as a Research Associate in 2004, working on a range of user-focused projects for a broad range of industry clients. In 2008 he undertook a full-time EPSRC funded PhD in Design Research at Brunel University, which focused on designers use of information and empathy to support people-centred design. Whilst at Brunel he was a founding member the Inclusive Design Research Group (IDRG).

    Chris has lead the research aspect of several highly successful collaborative projects such as ‘Design Bugs Out’ with the Department of Health to redesign hospital commodes with PearsonLloyd and Kirkton Healthcare; ‘Design a Safer Pint Glass’ for the Department of Health that looked to reduce the impact of glass injuries in alcohol-related violence. Currently he manages projects such as the New London Taxi, a collaboration with Turkey based Hexagon and Karsan, an ongoing project to redesign a ‘hyper-inclusive’ vehicle for the streets of London.

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  • External collaborations

  • Reviewer

    • IAUD, Japan. 20
    • Include, London. 2007- present
    • CWUAAT, Cambridge. 2008 - present
    • Journal of Engineering Design. 2008 - present

    Additional Roles    

    • STEM Ambassador
    • Design Council Mentor
    • RCA Service Design – visiting tutor
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  • Publications, exhibitions and other outcomes

  • Books
    Gheerawo, R., McGinley, C. and Gorzaneli C. (2014) ‘Inventory: 7 years | 7 projects. Collaborative work from BlackBerry and the Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design at The Royal College of Art’, Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design, Royal College of Art, London

    McGinley, C. (2012) Supporting people-centred design through information and empathy. PHD Thesis. Brunel University

    McGinley, C. and Gaudion, K. (2012) ‘Green Spaces: Exploring outdoor environments for adults with autism’. Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design, Royal College of Art, London

    McGinley, C. and Till, C. (2010).'Design Out Crime: Using design to reduce injuries from alcohol related violence in pubs and clubs', Design Council. Online publication

    Book Chapters 
    Gheerawo, R., and McGinley, C (2015).Communities and communication: Socially Inclusive Design Across the Age Spectrum’. Ageing, Ingenuity & Design: International Cases Collection. Lee, Y. and Moore, P. (eds). Hong Kong Design Institute

    McGinley, C. and Dong, H. (2009). 'Accessing user information for use in design', In Stephanidis, C. (Ed). Universal Access in HCI, Part 1, HCII2009, LNCC 5614. Heidelberg: Springer Berlin, pp 116-125

    Peer-reviewed Journals
    Lowe, C., Gaudion, K., McGinley, C. Kew, A. (2014) ‘Designing living environments  with adults with autism’, Tizard Learning Disability Review, Vol. 19 Issue: 2, pp. 63-72

    Dong, H., McGinley, C., Nickpour, F., Cifter, A. (2013) ‘Designing for designers: Insights into the knowledge users of inclusive design’, Applied ergonomics

    McGinley, C., and Macredie R (2011) 'Towards Diversity and Empathy in Design Development', In Zoontechnica: The Journal of Redirective Design, Volume 1, Number 1, November 2011

    McGinley, C., and Dong, H. (2011) 'Designing with information and empathy: delivering human information to designers', in The Design Journal, Volume 14, Number 2,  June 2011, pp. 187-206(20)

    Conference Proceedings

    Grover, S., Atkin, R. & McGinley, C. (2015), `Certainty as a Provocation: The design and analysis of 2 Quant-Qual tool dyads for a qualified self technology project' at Research Through Design, Cambridge, March 2015

    McGinley, C. (2014) ‘Digital propositions co-created through cultural and community engagement: The HHCD BB Student Programme’. Creative Citizens Conference, Royal College of Art, UK

    McGinley, C. (2014) 'Designing Materials for Engagement and Insight: Findings from the AKTIVE project'. AKTIVE Conference, University of Leeds, UK 

    McGinley, C., Gheerawo, R., Toriumi, K., Furetta, A., and Hsu. S. (2014) 'Designing with Community: The Designers Role in Innovative Local Travel Service Co-creation'. The 5th International Conference for Universal Design, Tokyo

    Yeandle, S., Buckle, P., Fry, G., Hamblin, K., Koivunen, E.-R. and McGinley, C. (2014) 'The AKTIVE project's social, design and prospective hazard research: research methods'. University of Leeds, UK

    McGinley, C., Dong, H. & Macredie, R. (2013) ‘Exploring the potential of people-based information and empathy resources with professional designers.’ IASDR 2013, Shibaura Institute of Technology, Tokyo, Japan

    McGinley, C., and Dong, H. (2010) 'Co-design insights: workshop with designers and the public' The 3rd Universal Design Conference, Hamamatsu, Japan, 30 October-3 November 

    McGinley, C., Macredie, R. and Dong, H. (2010). 'Probing for Insight: developing human information resources', Include 2011, London, UK, 18-20 April 

    McGinley, C., Bound, J. and Dong, H. (2010). 'Contextualising data for design' CWUAAT 2010, Fitzwilliam College, 22-25 March 2010, Cambridge, UK

    McGinley, C., and Dong, H. (2009) 'Design Bugs Out: a real world investigation of hospital bedside chairs and commodes'. The 17th World Congress on Ergonomics (IEA'09), 9-14 August 2009, Beijing, China

    McGinley, C., (2009) 'The collection, communication and inclusion of user data in design', Research Student Conference, ReSCon09, School of Engineering & Design, Brunel University, London, UK 22-24 June 

    McGinley, C., Gheerawo R, Slater A (2008). 'Enlightened: Designing domestic lighting for older people', International Federation of Ageing 9th Global Conference 'Ageing & Design' Montreal, Canada pp 4-7, September 

    McGinley, C., Gheerawo R, Matsunami H (2006). 'Inclusive Konro - Improving Kitchen Stoves in Japan', The 2nd International Conference for Universal Design, Kyoto, Japan pp 22-26, October

    Articles and Reports
    Gaudion, K. McGinley, C. and Myerson, J. (2014) 'Artworks I like: Exploring Artwork Preferences with Autistic People'. [online] [accessed 11 November 2014].

    Yeandle, S., Buckle, P., Fry, G., Hamblin, K., Koivunen, E.-R. and McGinley, C. (2014) 'The AKTIVE project’s social, design and prospective hazard research: research methods' AKTIVE Research Report Vol.3, Leeds, CIRCLE, University of Leeds

    McGinley, C., Gheerawo, R. and Salnot, F. (2014). ‘Retirement Tales’. Nesta

    McGinley, C., Gheerawo, R. and Salnot, F. (2013) 'Retirement Tales'. Technical Report. The Helen Hamlyn Centre for Design, Royal College of Art 

    McGinley, C. & Gaudion, K. (2013) ‘Outdoor environments for adults with autism’, World Health Design, January

    McGinley C (2010) 'Bridging the 'human information' gap between professional designers and those they design for'. Inclusive Design Research in Action, in Design for All newsletter special issue 5(6), Design for All Institute India, pp19-27, June
    Keynote and Invited Presentations

    McGinley, C. (2017) Empathy Approaches for Design Thinking, Design Thinking Deep Dive, Russia, 5 July 2017

    McGinley, C. (2017) Connecting Communities Through Design, Include 2017, Knowledge of Design Week, Hong Kong, 12-16 June 2017

    McGinley, C. (2016) Engaging Diverse Partners in the Design Process, Construction Industry Summit: Fit for an Inclusive Future, London, 21 September 2016

     McGinley, C. (2016) Ageing, Diversity and Design: Exploring 10 Principles, The Age of No Retirement’s Festival of Age Disruption, London, 30 September 2016

    McGinley, C. (2016) Designing for Inclusive Living, Kitchen Design Residential Weekend, Bucks New University, 14 October 2016

    McGinley, C. (2016) Design Thinking for Innovation in Healthcare, Design Thinking Workshop, Health Foundation, 6-10 March 2017

    McGinley, C. (2015) `Challenging Interventions: Empathy and people centred approaches'. at International Society of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity Satellite, University of St Andrews, Fife, 7 June 2015 

    McGinley, C. (2015) `Designs For Life'. at Long Term Care Revolution Live, NatWest Headquarters, London, 13 May 2015

    McGinley, C. (2015) `Empathy: Understanding the messiness of everyday life.' at Rising Minds, Shoreditch House, London, 19 February 2015

    McGinley, C. (2014) `Design, Care and Home', at Kyushu University, Japan, 15 December 2014

    McGinley, C. (2014) `Ethical Design: An inclusive research and design perspective', at Royal College of Art, London, 5 December 2014

    McGinley, C. (2014) `Designing for Real Life'. At Visa Europe Design Jam, at Royal College of Art, London, 6 February 2014

    McGinley, C. (2014) 'Redesigning Retirement'. Dirty Rotten Socials: Design Like you Give a Damn, London, UK

    McGinley, C. (2014) ‘Design and Care Homes’. Care Homes Workshop: Kyushu University, Fukuoka, Japan

    McGinley, C. (2014) ‘People Centred Design: A Designer/Design Researcher Perspective’. University of Brighton, UK

    McGinley, C. (2014) ‘People Centred Design Research Case Study: Safe Ways In Glass’. University of Brighton, UK

    McGinley, C. (2014) ‘Human Centred Design: Principles and Practice’. Imperial College, UK

    McGinley, C., (2014). ‘Designing Materials for Engagement and Insight’ Aktive Conference - Technology, Care and Ageing: Enhancing Independence, Leeds, April 2014

    McGinley, C. Dong, H. & Macredie, R. (2013) ‘Exploring the potential of people-based information and empathy resources with professional designers.’ IASDR 2013, Shibaura Institute of Technology, Tokyo, Japan

    McGinley, C. (2013) ‘Designing for Later Years’, Add Healthy Years to Longer Lives Conference, London

    McGinley, C. (2013) ‘People centred approaches: route to information, insight and inspiration.’ Telecare and Independent Ageing Conference, London 
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Research students