Pamela Napier


Promoting people-centered design research and community engagement

Professor Pamela Napier’s research focuses on how to enable people to solve challenges facing them in their everyday lives by facilitating cross-disciplinary and interdisciplinary communication and collaboration throughout the design process. Founded on the belief that all people have the potential to identify challenges, create innovative solutions, and bring about meaningful change, Napier’s approach is people-centered. She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses utilizing a service-learning pedagogy, where students engage people in various communities, organizations, and institutions to help them do those very things. The frameworks and models she developed to practice and teach people-centered design research and facilitation are not only being used in other classes—but by educators in other universities across the country. Organizations and institutions for which she has provided design research, strategy, and facilitation services have implemented new products and services as a result of that work, and have adopted her approach and methods in their own practices. Professor Napier’s work to solve challenges with people and organizations is another example of how IUPUI faculty are TRANSLATING RESEARCH INTO PRACTICE.

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