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Dagstuhl Seminar 10373

Demarcating User eXperience

( Sep 15 – Sep 18, 2010 )

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Thirty user experience (UX) researchers and practitioners spent three days in Dagstuhl in order to bring clarity to the concept of user experience. The participants represented different perspectives to user experience from holistic to modeling approach, from real-time psychophysiological research to investigating user experience after a long period of time, and from standardization and research to consultancy work.

By ‘demarcating’ user experience, the organizers wanted to make the relation clearer to the neighboring concepts of usability, interaction design, consumer experience, etc. The term created a lively discussion on whether this field needs demarcation: many researchers do not want their research field to be limited, while some industry people need a sound judgment on what user experience work includes. Despite the different needs, the participants seemed to agree on the need for bringing clarity to the vague concept of user experience. The participants also identified the need for further work on clarifying the different theoretical perspectives behind the different interpretations of user experience, and their impact on user experience work both in industry and academia.

Instead of dismissing the whole term of user experience, we believe UX can be defined to cover a certain set of cases and to make its scope clear. In this seminar, we will demarcate the field of user experience.

The main result of the seminar is a white paper, which aims to clarify some core concepts of user experience. As can be seen from the abstracts in this collection, it has been challenging to come up with a white paper that would serve all needs and do justice to all the different perspectives. This work was on conceptual level, so the paper does not provide direct practical guidance for UX work. Nevertheless, thanks to the wide variety of perspectives to user experience represented, the seminar was an eye-opening experience for the participants.

The User Experience White Paper is based on the discussions between the participants in Dagstuhl and is available at

  • Nigel Bevan (London, GB)
  • Mark Blythe (University of York, GB)
  • Elizabeth Buie (RedJack LLC - Silver Spring, US)
  • Gilbert Cockton (University of Northumbria, GB)
  • Sarah Diefenbach (Folkwang Hochschule - Essen, DE) [dblp]
  • David Gilmore (LOGITECH - Fremont, US)
  • Marc Hassenzahl (Folkwang Hochschule - Essen, DE) [dblp]
  • Kristina Höök (Swedish Institute of CS - Kista, SE) [dblp]
  • Jettie Hoonhout (Philips Research Lab. - Eindhoven, NL)
  • Kasper Hornbaek (University of Copenhagen, DK) [dblp]
  • Evangelos Karapanos (TU Eindhoven, NL) [dblp]
  • Joseph Kaye (NRC - Palo Alto, US)
  • Turkka Keinonen (Aalto University, FI)
  • Kyle Kilbourn (University of Southern Denmark - Odense, DK)
  • Joke Kort (TNO ICT - Groningen, NL)
  • Marek Kowalkiewicz (SAP Research - Brisbane, AU)
  • Masaaki Kurosu (Open University of Japan - Chiba, JP)
  • Kari Kuutti (University of Oulu, FI)
  • Effie Lai-Chong Law (University of Leicester, GB) [dblp]
  • Sascha Mahlke (USEEDS° GmbH - Berlin, DE)
  • Ian McClelland (Ringmer, Lewes, GB)
  • Ingrid J. Mulder (TU Delft, NL)
  • Virpi Hannele Roto (Aalto University, FI) [dblp]
  • Marco C. Rozendaal (TU Eindhoven, NL)
  • Noam Tractinsky (Ben Gurion University - Beer Sheva, IL)
  • Kaisa Väänänen (Tampere University of Technology, FI) [dblp]
  • Jasper van Kuijk (TU Delft, NL)
  • Paul van Schaik (Teesside University - Middlesbrough, GB)
  • Arnold Vermeeren (TU Delft, NL)

  • society / human computer interaction / hci
  • interdisciplinary

  • User experience
  • Affective interaction
  • Experiential evaluation
  • Definition