• Authors:
    • Dongjin Song
    • Yongqi Lou


These years, with the revolution of social innovation, design is enlarging its scope and actively initiated to social and public sector, design activism movement is emerging. Isolation of design practice and research was found in design oriented social innovation projects, new research approach of design activism needs to be explored to suit new situation. Action research (AR) is a well-used methodology as well as natural practice in social sector since the late 1940s and considered as theory-practice dialectic based knowledge generation and learning process that is useful to integrate research and practice in social sectors. I Initially review on the literature about relationship of AR to design. This is followed by a reflective and explorative describing of my reflection on long-term social innovation project-DESIGN Harvests. AR Cycle and distributed innovation network with equal status between researchers and practitioners are crucial in such project. The article predicted that AR that informed by design has the potential to serve as an emerging approach of design activism for integrating research and practice of design.