Dutch university bestows honorary doctorate on Batya Friedman

Batya Friedman
Batya Friedman

Batya Friedman, a professor in the Information School, has been awarded an honorary doctorate from Delft University of Technology in Delft, Netherlands.

The honor was one of two given to researchers who “symbolize new perceptions in design” during Dies Natalis, the Dutch school’s 178th anniversary celebration, on Jan. 10. Friedman gave a keynote lecture during the event’s Program Design for Values Symposium.

Friedman is founder and co-director, with iSchool colleague David Hendry, of the UW’s Value Sensitive Design Lab. The two also co-wrote the 2019 book “Value Sensitive Design: Shaping Technology with Moral Imagination.”

Value sensitive design, the two wrote, “brings together theory, methods and applications for a design process that engages human values at every stage.”

In the ceremony, Delft professor Ibo van de Poel praised Friedman as a pioneer: “In 1996, you for the first time used the term value sensitive design in a publication … Now, 20 years later the approach has been adopted world-wide.”

Watch a video of the Dies Natalis event (Friedman appears at about the 55:35 mark).