Authors and facilitators 


Dr. Maarten Van Mechelen (facilitator) is a postdoc researcher at the Meaningful Interactions Lab (Mintlab, KU Leuven – imec), investigating how to design meaningful technology for and with children. Maarten holds degrees in Cultural Sciences (MA from VUB) and Graphic Design (MA from PXL-MAD), and successfully defended a jointly funded Ph.D. in the Arts and Social Sciences (UHasselt – KU Leuven). Maarten is a founding member of the Kids in Design (KID) group and co-organized a workshop on participatory design for serious games at CHI Play in Toronto in 2014.


Prof. Dr. Marikken Høiseth (facilitator) works as Associate Professor in the Department of Design at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) where she teaches introductory courses in design and supervises Master students. In her Ph.D. project, she focused on applying human-centered design principles in the specific case of young children with respiratory diseases receiving medical treatment at the hospital. Marikken’s research interests lie in the intersection of human-centered design, design with and for children, meaning-making processes, social semiotics, healthcare design, and co-design.


Gökçe Elif Baykal (facilitator) is a Ph.D. candidate and research assistant in the Design, Technology & Society Program at Koç University in Istanbul. Elif carries out research on evidence-based interaction design to facilitate preschoolers’ spatial skills (i.e., mental rotation). Elif holds a BA in Sociology from Marmara University and an MA in Visual Arts from Sabancı University. Her interest in children’s media goes back to her experience in the children’s television industry. She is currently a member of Happern (Interactive Information Design Research Group), and Language and Cognition Lab at Koç University.


Dr. Fenne van Doorn is a postdoc researcher at Industrial Design Engineering at the Delft University of Technology. After finishing her master ‘Design for Interaction’ and working in the design field, she started her Ph.D. on the topic of contextual user research with children to inspire design. Her Ph.D. thesis, defended in 2016, explores ways to give children the role of co-researcher in the design process. Fenne is a founding member of the Kids in Design (KID) group and is currently working on two nationally funded research projects (Co-Design with Kids / Healthy by Design).


Prof. Dr. Asimina Vasalou is Associate Professor at UCL Knowledge Lab. Her research interests are oriented by a value sensitive approach to technology. She employs participatory design as an approach to stimulate more criticality as to the kinds of technologies we design and provide new perspectives on how ‘design problems’ are framed. As part of this work, she has been concerned with methodological developments e.g. in how to enable children to participate in design and how to undertake interpretive reflexive analysis of design research. Asimina co-organized a workshop on participatory design at CHI Play 2014.


Alice Schut is a Ph.D. candidate at the Science Education and Communication group of the TU Delft. She is currently working on a NWO/NRO research project in which a multi-disciplinary team develops a toolbox to teach children 21st-century skills through real-life design projects. In this project, she is researching the key factors that enable and/or disable the development of children’s (age 8-12) design ideas when applying divergent and convergent thinking processes. Her research specifically focuses on the creative development of the design ideas and is practice driven.

Workshop committee 


Prof. Mathieu Gielen is an Assistant Professor in Design for Children’s Play at TU Delft and a founding member of the Kids In Design (KID) group. His teaching and research interests are two-fold. With a bottom-up focus, he develops methods for designers to understand children’s worlds of experience and appropriately include children in co-design. Via the top-down focus, he explores how theories and methodology from other disciplines can be employed by designers to advance their understanding of play and inspire the creation of novel play experiences through design.


Drs. Anke Herder is a researcher at the Center for Discourse and Learning of the NHL University of Applied Sciences (Leeuwarden) and a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Groningen. Her study is focused on co-writing activities in the context of inquiry learning of primary school students. There are two main goals: first, to obtain more insight into interactional language and secondly to acquire insight into how knowledge construction is established around a research topic in this setting. In the past, she worked as an educational consultant, author, and editor of educational school methods.


Dr. Remke M. Klapwijk is a senior researcher at the Science Education and Communication group of the Delft University of Technology (TUDelft) and an educational consultant at the Hobéon Group. Her research is practice-driven and focuses on creativity in design and the facilitation of divergent thinking processes in primary education. She is currently involved in a NWO/NRO research project in which industrial designers, specialists in design education, teachers, and companies develop a toolbox to teach children 21st-century skills through real-life design projects.


Dr. Jan Derboven is a senior researcher at Meaningful Interactions Lab (Mintlab, KU Leuven – imec). His research is situated primarily in the domains of media (technology, games & education) and health (assistive technologies). Jan focuses on technology appropriation, investigating how people use and reinterpret technologies in everyday life. He graduated as a Master in Germanic Languages and in Cultural Studies. Before joining Mintlab, he has worked for various companies as a consultant in human-centered design and technical writing.