Weaving social and cultural sciences and Indigenous knowledge into engineering design practices can contribute to social well-being and sustainability. As Canada Research Chair in Incorporating Social and Cultural Sciences in Engineering Design, Dr. Lori Bradford is creating knowledge to support a shift in both engineering culture and individual practices in order to promote positive social, environmental and economic impacts.
She and her research team are using systematic reviews, interviews and data archives to take the pulse of engineering design practice. They are also creating scales to measure how well social and cultural sciences and Indigenous knowledge are used and promoting real-time engineering co-design that unites researchers, students, industry, government and regulatory stakeholders, and citizens. In addition, they are exploring how gaming can reinforce collaborative thinking and inclusive engineering design. Ultimately, their goal is to transform engineering culture so that it includes thinking by social scientists, Indigenous scholars and communities.