Designing a profession: the structure, organisation and identity of the design profession in Britain, 1930-2010

Leah Armstrong

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis


Since the establishment of the Society of Industrial Artists (SIA) in 1930, the professional identity of the designer has been a subject of critical debate. This thesis uncovers the histories of this debate, paying particular attention to the structures, organisations and social practices that have governed, represented and given meaning to the identity of the designer in Britain, 1930-2010. Principally informed by close scrutiny of the archive of the Chartered Society of Designers, (CSD), the thesis argues that the design profession is constructed through reflexive social practices, in which the designer has been, and remains, an active agent. It contends that the structure, organisation and identity of the design profession is not fixed or immutable, but fluid, responsive and contingent upon shifting dynamics, internal and external to the profession.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • University of Brighton
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2014


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