Conference Agenda

6.a 2/2 & 3.b 1/2: Materiality in the Digital Age & Measuring and communicating the value of design
Wednesday, 19/Jun/2019:
2:00pm - 3:40pm

Session Chair: Bo GAO
Session Chair: Jo'Anne Langham
Location: LDN.102
1st floor Loughborough University London 60 capacity

Session Abstract

This track aims to open the discussion into the topic of materiality in the digital age. It will address how educators from kindergarten and onwards work with, through or even against the digital in relation to materiality, i.e. how digital practices transform the research and education dealing with the topic of materiality.

In art, design and craft education at different levels, the digital and the material meet, either as integrated wholes, as collaborations or as violent collisions. In such collaborations or collisions, the existence of materiality can be understood differently depending on the viewpoints of art, design and craft educators. Some educators move seamlessly across digital and physical materiality in their practice. For other educators the concept of materiality exists as something separate from the digital, while others speak of digital materiality as a space where the digital becomes “something” and gains materiality.

The educational field dealing with these questions does so from several ideological positions. However, avoiding the turbulence of questioning these positionings is unhealthy, and bold thinking often emerges from turbulence. Questions such as; How can education address the balance or imbalance of the intangible, of culture, atmosphere, pedagogy and ethics, in the meeting between the digital and materiality? How can we challenge the dichotomy of digital/material, that can exist symbiotically and in endless ways, and how can we address ensuing tensions between social innovation and education? are just some of the discussions we foresee.

The track also extends its discussion to how the coexistence and collision of the digital and materiality transforms societies and impact people’s ways of experiencing things. The ensuing discussions might transform how art, design and craft educators prepare for the meeting between the digital and materiality. We hope for a broad approach to this track, with rich discussions in regard to this topic.

2:00pm - 2:25pm

Experiencing (from) the inside – Mediated perspectives in kindergartens

Ingvard Bråten, Jon Hoem

Western Norway University of Applied Sciences, Norway

This paper presents a case study of preservice kindergarten teachers’ use of new form of digital imagery. The paper introduces spherical cameras and digital microscopes and discusses their affordances when introduced in practical use in in teacher education and in kindergartens. The use in kindergartens was introduced through a class of 34 teacher students in kindergarten education. The students were specializing in Arts and design at Western Norway University of Applied Sciences. The use of images from spherical cameras and digital microscopes is discussed and analysed, based on data from student responses through two questionnaires, group presentations and discussions in class, and an analysis of various media material produced by students.

Track 6.a-Experiencing (from) the inside – Mediated perspectives-254Bråten_a.pdf

2:25pm - 2:50pm

Aarup 1960 and the poetics of materials

Liv Mildrid Gjernes

Western Norway University of Applied Sciences, Norway

All design has its own conditional modes of expression; however, these are realised through the maker’s sense of the possibilities of materiality. This essay was inspired by a reclaimed piece of 1960s furniture designed in the modernist idiom, and is based upon autobiographical experiences, original works from own and contemporary aesthetic practices, and associated thoughts in the present. A completely new artistic expression was developed, which questioned the strict, use-defined style ideals and let shape reveal other values and statements than function.

The intention of this essay is to put into words some of the cognitive processes in which creativity, critical reflection and the senses’ experience-based insights may bring up something new. In creative work, the goal is not to reach a single result; every little discovery made by examining something specific could open up new worlds.

Track 6.a-Aarup 1960 and the poetics of materials-267Gjernes_a.pdf

2:50pm - 3:15pm
Research in Progress

Design as a Catalyst for Change – Towards Strategically Embedded Design in SMEs

Dorota Biniecka1, Erik Bohemia2

1Mitchell & Cooper, UK; 2Oslo Metropolitan University, Norway

Effective application of design brings benefits across corporate, business and operational levels within an organisation, from contributing to development of competitive advantage to opportunity identification and innovation project execution. Nevertheless, transition to strategic design requires transformation of culture, structures and processes in a manner tailored to organisation’s unique competitive realities. As such, this paper reviews interview-based findings of the latter of a two-part Design and Innovation Capability Audit of a family-owned SME, to provide insight into the state of the design use in this context. Design Management Europe Staircase is used as an evaluative framework. The interviews illustrate diverse perspectives of design across organisational hierarchy and demonstrate struggles many SMEs experience in evolving design’s application. Additionally, audit’s immediate to-date benefits are discussed. Finally, the paper concludes discussing the contribution qualitative interviews can offer in measuring Design Capability, thus contributing to expansion of the DME Staircase as an audit tool.

Research in Progress-Design as a Catalyst for Change – Towards Strategically Embedded Design-383Biniecka.pdf

3:15pm - 3:40pm

Mapping strategies for distributed, social and collaborative design systems of makers, designers and social entrepreneurs

Massimo Menichinelli1,2, Alessandra Gerson Saltiel Schmidt2,3, Priscilla Ferronato4,2

1RMIT University; 2IAAC | Fab City Research Lab; 3AGS Invest; 4University of Illinois Urbana Champaign - Illinois Informatics Institute

The practice of designers has recently evolved from a relatively closed ecosystem of professional actors to an ecosystem with less clear boundaries and roles. Makers can be considered (and often are) designers or a new kind of designers working with open, peer-to-peer, distributed and DIY approaches. And both makers and designers increasingly work with social innovation initiatives, becoming thus social entrepreneurs or collaborating with them. Where are makers, designers and social entrepreneurs, how many are there, how do we reach them and network them? This article presents a first exploration of literature, cases and datasets that represent direct or indirect approaches for mapping where they can be found. These formal or informal approaches are clustered in three groups: work, place and community. Each dimension generates a different perspective with different approaches and datasets, which influences our view and definition of makers, designers and social entrepreneurs.

Track 3.b-Mapping strategies for distributed, social and collaborative design systems-378Menichinelli_a.pdf