Sébastien Proulx, Ph.D.

Sébastien Proulx, Ph.D.

Sébastien Proulx, Ph.D.

Associate Professor | Industrial Design Coordinator
Pronouns: He, Him, His / Honorific: Dr.



125B Hayes Hall
108 North Oval Mall
Columbus OHIO 43210

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Areas of Expertise

  • Industrial Design
  • Social Design
  • Design Studies
  • User Experience
  • Moral Sociology


  • Postdoc in Public Health, IRSPUM, Université de Montréal
  • Ph.D. Design, Université de Montréal
  • M.A.Sc. Design and Complexity, Université de Montréal
  • B.F.A. Graphic Communication, Université Laval
Sébastien Proulx is Associate Professor of Design, Coordinator for the industrial design major and Co-Director of the DESIS Lab at The Ohio State University. He holds a PhD in Design and a Master of Applied Science in Design and Complexity from the University of Montreal (Canada). He completed postdoctoral studies in public health at the University of Montreal Public Health Research Center (IRSPUM) and a doctoral fellowship in political and moral sociology at the Paris School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences (EHESS).
Before joining Ohio State’s Department of Design, Dr. Proulx was a lecturer at the University of Montreal’s School of Design for 12 years. He taught social service design, problem setting and visual communication to industrial design students. He is also a recurring visiting professor at the University of Nîmes (France) where he teaches within the Design for Social Innovation graduate program.
He serves as Associate Editor of the francophone peer-review journal Sciences du Design (PUF). He also remain affiliated, as a research associate, to the University of Montreal’s Design et Société research group. 
His research program revolves around the role of designers in the development of public services and policies. His approach draws on moral sociology and care ethics to develop an appropriate conceptual framework to provide designers with ways to cope with the complexity of contemporary social and political realities. His research goals are about 1) understanding designers’ role in the sociopolitical realm (theoretical goal), 2) expanding the horizon of design activities in the development of public services (practical goal) and 3) making designers capable of assuming the responsibilities associated to such a stance (pedagogical goal).


  • Building Bridges between Design and Public Health
  • Design as a Care Practice
  • Politics of User Experience
  • Problematization in Design: Problem Diagnostic Strategies & Methodologies
  • Digital Public Participation Lab: Exploring the Potential of the Hyve-3D System to Foster Democratic Decision-Making



Autumn 2020

  • Design 5200 | Design Research III
  • Design 5150 | Advance Industrial Design I
  • Design 4999 | Undergraduate Scholarship: Thesis Research and Creative Activity in Design

Spring 2021

  • Design 4650 | Collaborative Studio, Design for Public Health
  • Design 3151 | Introduction to Industrial Design, Design in the Public Sphere






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