Dr Victoria Haines

  • Reader in User Centred Design
  • Head of User Centred Design Research Group

Dr Victoria Haines heads the User Centred Design Research Group in the Loughborough Design School. She is a Reader in User Centred Design and holds a degree in Ergonomics, a Diploma in Professional Studies and a PG Certificate in Management. She is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors, a Registered European Ergonomist and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Victoria has worked extensively on projects with commercial and industrial partners as well as other academics, focusing on user centred design and energy. Her research focuses on how people interact with their environment and the products and services they use, particularly in the domestic energy field. Victoria sits on the University’s Ethics Committee, having previously been a long-standing member of the University’s Ethical Approvals (Human Participants) Sub-Committee. 

Professional Membership

  • Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy
  • Registered European Ergonomist

Victoria’s research focuses on the role of user centred design in the reduction of energy demand, particularly within the UK domestic sector. Recent projects include:

  • DEFACTO (Digital Energy Feedback And Control Technology Optimisation, 2012-2017, £1.5m, funded by RCUK’s Energy Programme), which is investigating how the use of digital heating control and feedback devices can enable the reduction of this domestic energy use.
  • i-STUTE (interdisciplinary centre for Storage, Transformation and Upgrading of Thermal Energy, 2013-2018, £5.3m, funded by RCUK’s Energy Programme) which is developing technologies that aim to reduce energy consumption and deliver cost-effective heating and cooling which will help the UK achieve its target of a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions of 80% by 2050.
  • Domestic Thermal Comfort (2014, funded by the Energy Technologies Institute) reviewing the literature around domestic thermal comfort and the implications for home heating systems.
  • Thermal Energy Storage, (2012-2013, £155k funded by UKERC) investigating the role of thermal storage in the UK energy system.
  • CALEBRE (Consumer Appealing Low Energy Technologies for Building Retrofitting, 2008-2013 £2.0m, funded by RCUK’s Energy Programme and E.ON) which investigated user behaviours and comfort relating to the implementation of retrofit energy saving technologies in the home and is focusing on owner-occupied, solid-walled houses.
  • CCC (Carbon, Control and Comfort: User-centred control systems for comfort, carbon saving and energy management, 2009-2012, £2.1m, funded by RCUK’s Energy Programme and E.ON) which investigated user-centred control systems for comfort, carbon saving and energy management, with a focus on social housing.
  • Trends in Domestic Appliances (2009-10, funded by the Department of Energy and Climate Change) which reviewed data on domestic appliances in order to identify where the priority areas for future policy should be. The report draws together information about the energy demands of current domestic appliance use at a household level and explores trends in future use, in order to predict future demands. The project was awarded the Consultancy prize at the Loughborough University Enterprise Awards in 2010.
  • Challenge 100 (2009-10). This multi-partner project led by E.ON to address fuel poverty aimed to remove 100 households from fuel poverty in 100 days, through a combination of retrofit building improvements and income maximisation. This project won several awards, including East Midlands Business in the Community Award, a national Energy Institute award (Commended) and was a finalist in the National Business in the Community awards.
  • 4S-DHW (Small Smart Sustainable Systems for Domestic Hot Water, 2016-2019, £1.25m, funded by EPSRC), investigating how hot water can be delivered to UK homes in an energy efficient way, whilst still meeting people’s requirements

Victoria also led Loughborough’s contribution to the Equipment Management and Services Aggregation Trials for the (then) Department for Trade and Industry (2002-2005) under 'The Application Homes Initiative'. These multi-partner projects researched and developed new systems to provide householders with targeted information about domestic energy use. The research aimed to identify what information people wanted (as opposed to what the technology could offer) and how it should be presented. Researchers conducted home trials with retrofitted equipment to establish the benefits and necessary design improvements.

Research Groups

  • User Centred Design Research Group
  • DSA105 – Introduction to Ergonomics (Contributing Lecturer)
  • DSA111 – Study skills (Contributing Lecturer)
  • DSB013 – Sustainable Design (Contributing Lecturer)
  • DSB118 – Human-Computer Interaction (Contributing Lecturer)
  • DSC021 – Design Research (Supervisor)
  • DSC100 – Ergonomics projects (Supervisor)
  • DSC112 – Designing Products for People (Contributing Lecturer)
  • DSC502 – Human Factors in Systems Design (Module Leader)
  • MPC113 – Design and Engineering Materials projects (Supervisor)
  • CVP303 – Building Energy Consumption (Contributing Lecturer)
  • CVP314 – Energy Demand in Context (Contributing Lecturer)
  • CVP350 – Quantitative and Qualitative Methods (Contributing Lecturer)
  • DSP101 – Introduction to Ergonomics (Contributing Lecturer)
  • DSP107 – Practitioner Skills (Contributing Lecturer)
  • DSP118 – Human computer interaction (Contributing Lecturer)
  • DSP105 – Physical Health at Work (Module Leader)

Current research students

  • Jacqueline Beckhelling (2013-2018): Making Sense of the Mess: The management and statistical analysis of a complex domestic energy use dataset
  • Nafsika Drosou (2013-2017): Daylight Metrics and Daylight Performance in UK schools: Can compliance encourage designs that save energy and meet visual requirements?
  • Radhiah Ariffin (2015-2018): The key building design, operational and human factors that determine an occupant’s light exposure in a work environment

Completed research students

  • Dr Nadine Geddes (2009) Approaches to Providing Disability and Employment Information
  • Dr Grace Smalley (2013) User centred approaches to prosthetic design
  • Dr Becky Mallaband (2013) Integrating User Centred Design into the development of energy saving technologies
  • Dr Natalie Moore (2014) Applying user-centred design to the service of installing renewable heating technology into UK social housing properties
  • Dr Andrea Burris (2014): Creature Comforts: An exploration of comfort in the home
  • Dr Keyur Vadodaria (2014): Thermal Comfort in UK Homes: How suitable is the PMV approach as a prediction tool?
  • Dr Lauren Probert (2015): Energy supplier involvement in English fuel poverty alleviation: a critical analysis of emergent approaches and implications for policy success
  • Dr Kate Simpson (2017): Energy efficiency refurbishment of UK owner-occupied homes: The householders’ perspective
  • Dr Ashley Morton (2017): Heating controls in UK homes