Overview and details of the sessions of this conference. Please select a date or location to show only sessions at that day or location. Please select a single session for detailed view (with abstracts and downloads if available).
5.a 2/2: Transforming Complexities through Design in Collaborative Community-based Processes
Complexity is a key characteristic of many participatory and community-oriented design activities. Designers’ varied roles are being transformed as they have to manage the complexities and entanglements associated with global societal, technological and environmental change. As design turns towards a social mode of operation and application, this track seeks to open a discourse on the role of design in managing the complexities that affect communities and individuals, alongside their attendant processes and practices. This track discusses the necessary skills and competencies designers may need in order to manage experiences of complexity associated with collaborative and community-oriented design. The role of design in creating solutions that result from understanding, interpreting and analysing multi-disciplinary processes, whilst seeking to adapt to sensitive societal and political situations will be considered. The practical solutions and outcomes that can be produced when (sensitive) social complexities are managed through design will be explored. The track invites practitioners and academics to contribute through case studies, methods, theories and initiatives that deal with complexities through design research and practice.
Topics to be explored include:
2:00pm - 2:25pm
Motivating Growth in Low-tech Manufacturing Industries: A Case Study of the Israeli Footwear Industry.
Bezalel Academy of Art and Design, Israel
Intensive manual labor enterprises in the developed world face challenges competing with products imported from countries where manufacturing costs are low. This reduces the volume of domestic production and leads to rapid loss of knowledge and experience in production processes. This study focuses on the Israeli footwear industry as a case study. Qualitative methodologies were applied, including in-depth interviews and field observations. A literature review on previous research and contemporary trends was conducted. The field research examines challenges along the value chain in small factories. It finds that mass production paradigms impose a decentralized process between designers and manufacturers and therefore do not leverage local potential into a sustainable competitive advantage for small factories. The proposed solution is a digital and technological platform for small manufacturing plants. The platform mediates and designs the connections between production, technology, and design and enables the creation of a joint R&D system.
2:25pm - 2:50pm
A Story of Journeys: Contemporary Design Facilitation
Parsons School of Design, United States of America
How is design itself transitioning and transforming as it moves into more complex domains of organizational and social change. In many of these contexts, designers now play roles as facilitators, working in complex systems and dynamic environments. Design facilitation itself is moving from being a vessel for participation and becoming a vehicle for organizational transformation and change. The authors use a case study of a multi-stakeholder international design facilitation project with UN Women’s Fund for Gender Equality to highlight some of the critical features of a design facilitation process, from mediation and navigation of systems of power and hierarchy within organizations to an expansion of designerly duties ‘before’ and ‘after’ a design intervention. Reflecting on this experience the authors propose possible models for design facilitation to further develop its approach, and offer future questions for the nascent field as it develops into a critical component of contemporary design practice.
2:50pm - 3:15pm
The Role of Design in Policy Making: A Wicked Problems Perspective
Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands
The design discipline is of increasing appeal to a public sector confronted with ill-defined problems consistent with the socially-embedded. This paper explores the role of design in policy making projects, by means of two case empirical case studies. We establish and apply a wicked problems perspective to analyse data from; (1) MindLab and (2) Helsinki Design Lab. Findings reveal that design is specifically useful in the mitigation of wicked policy problems when harnessed by a strategically composed multidisciplinary team including designers. The characteristics of design that are identified as essential are an interactive approach to problems, a holistic perspective, and a user-centred way of working. This paper contributes empirical evidence toward the role of design in policy making, drawing the two domains together via wicked problems theory.
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