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Dr Martin Stacey

Job: Senior Lecturer

Faculty: Computing, Engineering and Media

School/department: School of Computer Science and Informatics

Address: De Montfort University, The Gateway, Leicester, LE1 9BH

T: +44 (0)116 250 6256




Personal profile

Dr Martin Stacey is a cognitive scientist with a training in psychology and artificial intelligence. This background informs his teaching activities, which focus on human computer interaction and information design, and his research into how designers design. Martin’s research is fundamentally interdisciplinary, combining approaches from psychology, sociology, AI and philosophy and looking at comparisons between design processes in a variety of different industries. Martin’s research collaborators have included Claudia Eckert and Chris Earl (Design, Open University), John Clarkson (Engineering, Cambridge), Alan Blackwell (CS, Cambridge), Louis Bucciarelli (Engineering, MIT), and Anja Maier (Design Management, Danish Technical University).

Key research outputs

M.K. Stacey & C.M. Eckert
Reshaping the box: Creative designing as constraint management.
International Journal of Product Development
, volume 11 number 3/4, 241-255, 2010.

M.K. Stacey, C.M. Eckert & C.F. Earl
From Ronchamp by sledge: On the pragmatics of object references.
In J. McDonnell & P. Lloyd (eds.),
About: Designing: Analysing Design Meetings, Leiden, Netherlands: CRC Press, 2009, pp 360-379.

M.K. Stacey
Psychological Challenges for the Analysis of Style
Artificial Intelligence in Engineering Design, Analysis and Manufacturing
, volume 20 number 2, 167-184, 2006.

M.K. Stacey & C.M. Eckert
Against Ambiguity
Computer Supported Cooperative Work
, volume 12 number 2, 153-183, 2003.

C.M. Eckert & M.K. Stacey
Sources of Inspiration: A Language of Design
Design Studies
, volume 21 number 5, 523-538, 2000.

Research interests/expertise

Research interests

  • Design thinking
  • Design processes
  • Human Design Tool Interaction

Specific research topics

  • How people use representations of design information
  • Factors influencing problem structuring and creative thinking
  • Causal modelling of design processes
  • Role of object references in design
  • Sources of inspiration
  • Psychology of style
  • Epistemology of models in design
  • Research methodology for studying designing.

Areas of teaching

  • Human computer interaction
  • Systems analysis and design
  • Web design
  • Programming
  • Artificial intelligence.


BA Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford

MS Psychology, Carnegie-Mellon University

PhD Artificial Intelligence, University of Aberdeen

Membership of professional associations and societies

Design Society.

Current research students

Yee Mei Lim (2nd supervisor)

Professional esteem indicators

Member of Advisory Board for Design Computing and Cognition’06, ’08, ’10, ’12, ’14.

Reviewer for Artificial Intelligence in Engineering Design Analysis and Manufacturing, Design Studies, International Journal of Design Engineering, International Journal of Human Computer Studies, Journal of Automated Software Engineering, Journal of Engineering Design, Psychological Methods, Research in Engineering Design, Software Practice and Experience.