Designing Cultural Values into Interaction

Peer reviewed: 
Yes, item is peer reviewed.
Scholarly level: 
Graduate student (PhD)
Final version published as: 

Muntean, R., Antle, A.N., Hennessey, K., Matkin, B.B., Hennessy, K., Rowley, S. and Wilson, J. 2017. Designing cultural values into interaction. In Proceedings of Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI ’17), 6063-6074

Date created: 
Intangible cultural heritage
Indigenous heritage
Digital tabletops
Value sensitive design

In this paper, we highlight possibilities for designing intangible cultural values into interactions with technologies in heritage spaces. We do this specifically through the design of ʔeləәw̓ k̓ʷ — Belongings, an interactive tangible table installed in a cultural heritage museum. The tabletop was collaboratively designed to communicate complex and narrative information and values about Musqueam culture. Rather than focusing only on content and interface design, we wanted visitors to also experience Musqueam values through their interactions with the system. We describe our value-sensitive design process, present five interdependent design goals, discuss the design strategies that enabled us to meet these goals, and evaluate our approach through a user study. From our design process and evaluation we offer recommendations for designing values into interactions more generally and for tangible interactions specifically in ways that support visitors’ experience and understanding of specific cultural values through technology.


CHI 2017, May 06 - 11, 2017, Denver, CO, USA

Document type: 
Rights remain with the authors.
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)
Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC)
Graphics, Animation and New Media Network of Centres of Excellence (GRAND NCE)