Affect-in-cognition through the language of appraisals

Andy Dong, Maaike Kleinsmann, Rianne Valkenburg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


The premise of this paper is that affect is a basis for rationality and that affective processing is a constituent component of design thinking. The paper focuses on the influence of the valence of affective judgments on design thinking. Transcripts of design meetings are coded according to a formal, linguistic analysis of the semantic resources for appraisals, the display of sentiment and subjectivity in language. The research indicates that the appetitive or aversive orientation of appraisals has design thinking consequences on knowledge integration and generation. During knowledge integration, negative appraisals accompany periods of technical analysis and engineering new design solutions; conversely, positive appraisals accompany a reliance on general knowledge and background experience. During knowledge generation, positive appraisals are associated with the creation of knowledge while negative appraisals are associated with 'being stuck'.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)138-153
Number of pages16
JournalDesign Studies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • affect
  • concept generation
  • design thinking
  • language of design


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