Professor Anthony Dunne to Step Down as Head of the Design Interactions Programme

Professor Anthony Dunne has announced that he is leaving the College in order to focus on his design practice Dunne & Raby, established in 1994 with Fiona Raby.

Professor Dunne studied Industrial Design at the RCA before working at Sony Design in Tokyo. On returning to London he completed a PhD in Computer Related Design at the RCA. From 1991 to 1994, Anthony Dunne was visiting lecturer in Industrial Design, CRD and IDE. In 1994 he became Research Fellow in Computer Related Design. He later became a founding member of the CRD Research Studio, where, working as Senior Research Fellow, he led industry and EU funded research projects. 1998 he was also appointed senior tutor in Industrial Design, and in 2000 he became senior tutor in Design Products, where he jointly led Platform 3. 


In 2005, Anthony Dunne was made Professor and Head of Interaction Design. In 2006, the programme was renamed Design Interactions, reflecting a new way of thinking about the discipline.


Throughout his career at the RCA and in his work with Dunne & Raby, Professor Dunne’s mission has been to ensure that designers engage with the social, cultural, and ethical implications of existing and emerging technologies, using design to stimulate discussion and debate. In 2009, Professor Dunne was awarded the Sir Misha Black Award for Innovation in Design Education.


In 2011 Professor Dunne curated ‘What If’ at the Beijing International Design Triennial, along with Fiona Raby and Jin Jiangbo. With exhibits by a number of Design Interactions graduates, this was the first time a non-Chinese university was invited to showcase work at a Chinese design festival. The exhibition was a development of earlier 'What If' exhibitions for the Science Gallery in Dublin and the Wellcome Trust in London.


Professor Dunne leaves in College at the end of the academic year, July 2015, to see his final cohort of students through to graduation.


Dean of the School of Design, Professor Dale Harrow said: “Tony leaves the College at a high point, with his and Fiona’s critical design philosophy fully embedded throughout the School of Design. As a colleague, and as a valued member of my senior team, Tony will be much missed, as will Fiona.”

 

Professor Naren Barfield, Pro-Rector (Academic) added: “Under Tony’s leadership, Design Interactions has become one of the foremost programmes of its kind, with its researchers and graduates influencing debate and design policy globally. Dunne’s own formulation of critical design has contributed greatly to the enrichment of cultural life and public discourse through exhibitions exploring the social, cultural and ethical implications of emerging technology and science.”


Dr Paul Thompson, Rector, said: “For me, one of the most exciting prospects of joining the RCA in 2009 was the opportunity to work in the same institution as Tony Dunne and Fiona Raby. From Hertzian Tales in 2006 through to Speculative Everything in 2014, Tony has explored entirely new territories and perceptions of design.”


Professor Anthony Dunne said, “I feel very fortunate to have worked with so many amazingly talented students, teachers and colleagues across the RCA and within the prgramme during my time here, both as a student and as a member of faculty. I am very proud of what our team and students have achieved over the last decade and I look forward to continuing the many conversations that began here in new ways.“

 

Reader in Design Interactions Fiona Raby is to also leave the RCA. She studied Architecture at the RCA before working for Kei'ichi Irie Architects in Tokyo. She also holds an MPhil in Computer Related Design from the RCA. Along with Anthony Dunne, Fiona Raby was a founding member of the CRD Research Studio where she worked as a Senior Research Fellow leading externally funded research projects.

 

An international search for a new Head of Programme will begin immediately.