Paul Hazell


Senior Lecturer, Creative Digital Media (Design and Photography)

Department of Art and Design

Contact Details

tel: 01905 85 5392

Before becoming a full-time academic, Paul worked as a freelance multimedia designer while lecturing part-time at Falmouth School of Art and Design. He was the Head of BA Art & Design at the University of Worcester for a number of years beforebecoming Project Manager for development and operation of its Digital Arts Centre. Pauls research interests include aspects of pedagogy in applied media education and Design History.

Teaching & Research

Doctoral research

Director of Studies: Dr John Peters

Second and Third Supervisors: Dr James Taylor (Lancaster University); Dr Kjetil Fallan (University of Oslo)

'Properties, Functions and Value Complexes: exploring critical factors in the emergence of the utility Land Rover as an automotive icon'

The development of technical artefacts and the value complexes that emerge around them are underrepresented in both design history and cultural studies research. Yet these artefacts can play hugely significant roles in peoples lives. Some technical artefacts have the capacity to assume an iconic status, becoming established in the popular imagination and carrying rich and complex meanings. These associated meanings (or value complexes) are often capitalised on by commerce, most often in the form of branding. A technical artefacts meaning to a user or consumer can nonetheless be more complex than that which is projected by its manufacturer, and it is not fully controlled by the brand.

The research draws on several fields that deal with the nature, cultural significance and history of technical artefacts. These include the philosophy of technology, cultural studies (specifically informational capitalism), business history (particularly where economic factors are a driver) and design history. It also considers the potential of other approaches and theoretical models, from constructivist and deterministic philosophical approaches to Actor-Network Theory.

Research interests

Design history
Design education


University of Worcester
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Design History
2010 - 2016 (expected)

University of Worcester
PgCert, Research Methods
2010 - 2011

University of Coventry
MA, Design and Digital Media
1999 - 2001

Falmouth School of Art and Design
BA, Graphic Information Design, 1st
1988 -1992

Falmouth School of Art and Design
Diploma, Technical Illustration
1986 - 1988

Research outputs


'The Ford Model T' Iconic Design: 50 stories of 50 things, Berg 2013 - See more at:

Peer reviewed article for The Journal of Design & Culture (Bloomsbury) The Enthusiasts Eye: The Value of Unsanctioned Knowledge in Design Historical Scholarship (which I was lead author working with Prof Kjetil Fallan of Oslo University), January 2015.;jsessionid=60ak657q3a6m8.alice

Recently submit a chapter titled 'A difficult road: Designing a post-colonial car for Africa' for the Routledge Companion to Design History. Due for publication in 2016

Recent papers

A very British SUV: How Land Rover used sport, competition and notions of adventure to reinvent the utility four wheel drive
‘Design and Sport’, Design History Society Annual conference, University of Brighton, September 2012

The enthusiast’s eye: the dilettante of design history?
‘Design History and Subjectivity, Design History Society one day conference University of Hertfordshire, June 2013

Designing the post-colonial car: A bumpy road for personal transport in Africa.
‘Design History and Post-colonialism’, Design History Society Annual conference, National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, India, September 2013

Beating ploughshares into swords: The unintended adoption of the Land Rover into British military service.
‘Design for War and Peace’, Design History Society Annual conference, University of Oxford, September 2014

Sublime Design or Crass Contraption? Designing a mechanised means of exploring the utopian wilderness.
'How we live, and How we might live: Design and the Spirit of Critical Utopianism’, Design History Society Annual conference, California College of the Arts

Recent conference attendance

Design History Societyannual conference, Barcelona University

External Responsibilities