Research & publication

Research interests:

  1. Information architecture design: Meaning-making, social ontology and reality, social systems problems, synthetic integrity and existential design
  2. Design strategy, critical, reflexive and reflective practice
  3. Design ethics, education and (trans)disciplinarity

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For more than the last decade most of my research and theory has been accomplished with Terence Fenn.

Take a look at Research Gate for a detailed view of all my scholarly publications.

I conduct the majority of my academic research through the Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture at the University of Johannesburg (UJ)  in the Multimedia Department. Prior to this I was a Research Affiliate with the Visual Identities in Art and Design Research Centre (VIAD)

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With the IA Institute: For the 2012 / 13 year I was the chair of the Research Grants Committee for the IA Institute and was a member of the same grants judging panel in 2008, 2009 and 2010. I received the Research Grant award from the IA Institute in 2006 and 2011 (the former with Tegan Bristow and the latter with Terence Fenn).

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Applying Information Architecture in Design Thinking: Ideating Solutions to the Wicked Problem of Addiction

Hobbs, J. (2021). Dissertation. University of Johannesburg.

Footnotes to “Re: The Future of Information Architecture”

Hobbs, J. (2021). Journal of Information Architecture. Vol. 06. Iss. 01. Pp. 79–91.

Realising Discourse: A Strategic Design Solution to the Problem of Addiction

Design Culture(s). Cumulus Conference Proceedings Roma 2021, Di Lucchio, L, Imbesi, L, Giambattista, A & Malakuczi, V (Eds.), Volume #2. PDF: ISBN 978-952-64-9004-5
Cumulus Conference Proceedings Series, N°7, ISSN 2490-046X

Thoughts on Information Architecture as it Relates to Design: The Lost IA

Self published. 2020. Online at ResearchGate. DOI 10.13140/RG.2.2.14131.04642

“The Design of Socially Sustainable Ontologies”

J Hobbs and T Fenn. Journal of Philosophy and Technology. 32, 745–767. 2019.

“Nurturing Critical Citizen Designers: Applying Strategic Models for Reflective Practice”

T Fenn and J Hobbs. In (eds) Costandius, E. & Botes, H. Educating Citizen Designers in South Africa. Sun Press. 141-160. 2018

“Conceiving and Applying Relationship Models for Design Strategy” 

J Hobbs and T Fenn. ICORD 1, 6th International Conference of Research into Design. 2017.

“Experience-led Design Strategy”

T Fenn and J Hobbs. Design Management Academy. 2017

“The User Experience Landscape of South Africa” (report)

J Hobbs, M Pretorius and T Fenn. Self published. 2015

“The User Experience Landscape of South Africa” (paper)

M Pretorius, J Hobbs and T Fenn. SAICSIT. 2015

“Wicked Ethics in Design”

J Hobbs and T fenn. DEFSA. 2015

“The Firma Model: A Meta-framework for Design Research, Strategy and Critique”

J Hobbs and T Fenn. Cumulus Conference. 2015

“The Firma Model: A Tool for Resolving Complex Societal Problems”

J Hobbs and T fenn. DEFSA. 2015

“The design behind the design behind the design”

J Hobbs. Human Experience Design. Presented at the IA Summit. 2015

View the presentation translated into Japanese by Soyeon Lee

“The New Architecture”

J Hobbs. BCS IT Strategy 2014. 2014

“In 2014, brands will need to be digital first- and we need to help them change”

J Hobbs. DigitalArts. 2013

“Navigating indeterminacy through the application of journey design” 

J Hobbs and T Fenn. Design Development Research Conference, Kumasi, Ghana. 2013

“Applying user journey design to resolve complex design problems”

T Fenn and J Hobbs. GIDEC, 2013

“Preparing undergraduate design students for complexity: A case study of the Johannesburg Art Gallery project”

T Fenn and J Hobbs. GIDEC, 2013

“The information architecture of meaning-making”

J Hobbs and T Fenn. First presented at the 2013 IA Summit Baltimore, USA “Academics and Practitioners Round Table: Reframe IA” and published in “Reframing Information Architecture” Resmini, Andrea (Ed.). 2014 Springer HCI series.

“Pervasive Information Architectures as Architectures of Meaning for Complex Cross-channel Systems”

J Hobbs, A Resmini and T Fenn. Academic workshop. Pervasive 2012, Newcastle, UK. 2012

“Bridging the divide”

Hotel Yeoville Terry Kurgan. Fourthwall Books, 2013.

“The Information Architecture of Transdisciplinary Design Practice: Rethinking Nathan Shedroff‟s Continuum of Understanding” 

Hobbs J and Fenn T. Design Development Research 2012 Conference Proceedings. 2012

“Teaching the Design Thinking of Information Architecture”

Hobbs J and Fenn T. Pervasive Information Architecture: Designing Cross-Channel User Experiences Resmini A and Rosati L. 2011.

“A Role for Information Architecture in Design Education: Conceptualising Indeterminate Problems in Design Thinking”

Hobbs J and Fenn T. DEFSA South Africa. 2011.

“A Role for Information Architecture in Design Education: Developing Innovation Through Structured Thinking”

Hobbs J and Fenn T. DEFSA South Africa. 2011.

“From Practice to Discipline”

On Making: Integrating Approaches To Practice-Led Research in Art and Design. The Research Centre, Visual Identities in Art and Design, Faculty of Art Design and Architecture, University of Johannesburg. 2010

“Maturing a Practice”

Hobbs, J., Fenn, T., & Resmini, A. 2010. Journal of Information Architecture. Vol. 2, No. 1.

“Sex, Drugs and UX”

UX Storytellers. 2010. Editors: Jan Jursa, Stephen Kover and Jutta Grunewald.

“Designing for developing contexts”

ASIS&T (American Society for Information Science and Technology) Bulletin, August / September 2006.

“Am I an Information Architect?”

Information Architecture Institute 2007.

“An Introduction to User Journeys”

Boxes and Arrows 2006.

“Journeys, Needs and Trust: A Volkswagen Case Study”

Boxes and Arrows 2006.

“How Far is the Promised Land?”

Marketing Mix, 2005.

“The illusion of Consistency”

Enjin Magazine, 2005.

Various articles on the old jh-01 website, 2000 – 2008

Various ‘How to write HTML” articles for the MWEB iTutor series, 1998

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