Difficulty Level:

Design Phase:

Method Overview

"The HuValue tool is a means of facilitating thinking about and discussing human values. This tool supports designers with simple but familiar materials during their design process to analyse everything (object/subject/situation) from a wide value point of view. This approach, referred to as the HuValue perspective, enables designers to be aware of and sensitive to human values and to consider various aspects of their topic and different types of values—even if they personally do not value them."

Framework of ethics used



Method Intentions:

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Participants: Students, Industry practitioners

Materials Needed: Problem frame

The HuValue tool contains a value wheel, 45 value words , and 207 picture cards. These elements are intended to bridge the gap between the abstract level of human values and the practical level of design.

In the HuValue tool, the value framework is illustrated in a circular form as the value wheel. The Value wheel is a circle with nine value clusters. Each value cluster is introduced with an icon, a label, a mood board, a descriptive sentence, five key values, and some relevant terms. In the wheel, anyone can rank the value clusters in their order of importance to her/himself. Each value cluster has a 5-point scale: ‘Extremely important’, ‘Very important’, ‘Important’, ‘Somewhat important’, and ‘Not important’. In addition to the words, colour saturation separates various levels of the scale: the highest saturation is for ‘Extremely important and the lowest saturation for ‘Not important’ (with three more in between).

The Value words are 45 two-sided cards with a value word on the front and its relevant value cluster at the back, based on empirical research for grouping the value words (Kheirandish 2018).

The Picture cards contain 207 cards of three different types: 66 activities, 66 personas, and 75 products/services. Every activity card contains a picture showing an activity or behaviour, without any description. At the bottom of each card, there is a space in which people can write their own interpretation. The persona and product cards are combinations of pictures and texts. Persona cards include well-known people from all over the world in different disciplines, without judgement about their positive or negative influence, in addition to some artificial personas. Product/service cards present a wide variety of products, services, and design concepts.

Further Reading

Shadi Kheirandish, Mathias Funk, Stephan Wensveen, Maarten Verkerk, and Matthias Rauterberg. 2019. HuValue: a tool to support design students in considering human values in their design. Int. J. Technol. Des. Educ. (May 2019).