Designing the future of libraries

Workshops at Designing for Digital 2023

Both workshops will take place in-person on Tuesday, March 7th from 9:00 am – 12:15 pm. 

A Spring Cleaning Sprint: Let’s Tidy Up Our Websites

INSTRUCTOR: Rebecca Blakiston, Senior UX Researcher, AdHoc

TRACK: ​​UX in Practice


Library websites tend to have a lot of content. Our homepages are often cluttered, and hidden in the depths of our websites are often outdated, duplicative, and overly complex web pages, many of which are irrelevant to website visitors. Let's learn some tools and techniques to reduce our content bloat and simplify our websites, making them more sustainable in the long term.

In this workshop, you’ll learn how to:

  • Identify where your website needs the most clean-up.
  • Prioritize content that matters most through top task surveys, analytics, and other data.
  • Identify web pages you can merge, archive, or delete.
  • Reduce content to its simplest and most sustainable form.
  • Make the case for why simpler is better.


This in-person workshop will be live streamed and all handouts will be available in advance. The instructor will engage with the virtual audience after the workshop concludes.

Critical UX: interrupting and interrogating our practice to center equity and justice in design

INSTRUCTOR: Ashley Brewer, Senior Web and UX Librarian, Virginia Commonwealth University Libraries

TRACK: ​Leadership and Organizational Strategies


This workshop will provide an introduction to Critical UX and some of the most foundational methodologies used in UX research, with the goal of participants being able to conduct needs analyses to match UX methodology to project or design stage, and think about how to use UX and user research as a way to create just, equitable, accessible, human-centered and anti-racist systems and products.

This workshop will cover the following, with a focus on hands-on exercises and discussion:

  • An introduction to the most foundational UX methodologies, such as usability testing, user interviews, and focus groups.
  • Considerations and best practices for when and how to incorporate user research into your design project.
  • A discussion of the ways in which technology can cause and replicate harm, whether intentionally or unintentionally, and brainstorming strategies and considerations for harm reduction and creating systems of belonging in technology.
  • Some discussion of philosophical and theoretical frameworks like critical theory, reparative justice, and restorative design.
  • Tools used in in-person and remote user research and product testing.
  • Resources to continue to critically interrogate our work as designers and developers.

Following this course, participants will be able to:

  • think critically about their work as UX researchers and designers and the role they can play to disrupt assumptions about the design and development process.
  • use different theoretical frameworks alongside common UX research methods to minimize bias and harm.
  • apply a justice- and equity-focused lens to the interpretation of UX research data and findings and help design teams to think critically about how they interpret data into empathetic and human-centered interfaces and systems.


This in-person workshop will only be available in-person in Austin. It will not be available on the Online Conference Platform.