practice

"design the good life" Workshop at Digital Shoreditch

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A Workshop at Digital Shoreditch

11 May 2015

I ran a short session workshop at Digital Shoreditch, a very low-fi session with the aim to understand how do we Design For The Good Life.  What does the Good Life look like?  How do we manifest such values towards more sustainable ways of living in our creative practcices, interactions with clients and end consumers or users.

Through a dynamic and collaborative process the group explored, reflected, and critiqued a number of diferent expressions of how notions of the Good Life might be manifested.

PhD Workshop: designing narratives positive impact

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Workshop: Designing Narratives of Positive ImpactPart of doctoral research "Communication Design for Sustainability" Kindly hosted by General Assembly at Second Home London

This workshop explored a practical tool currently in development as part my research . The aim of is to empower small-scalebusinesses with a focus on sustainability to articulate and communicate narratives of positive impact through their own means.

In this practical and dynamic session, the group collaborated with sustainable food businesses Soleshare, Bloombox Salads, Rubies in the Rubble and Ubuntu Chocolate.

Mapping Meaning

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Mapping MeaningShowcases work in progress of research project "Communication Design for Sustainability" Exhibited at Spotlight2015 Exhibition, Central Saint Martins, London, March 2015

The communication design research is practice-oriented and in collaboration with a selection of sustainable food initiatives - an example of a thriving sector for social innovation. The aim is to extract from these a set of practices that reveal how sustainability “values” and “qualities” are expressed through communication design approaches. Communication design is interpreted as an expanded practice of message, form, interaction and experience, essential in leveraging social change towards more sustainable ways of living. Presented here is a fragment of the ongoing research. Extracting meaning from informal conversations with sustainable food initiatives, to map what are sustainability qualities and values.

PhD Research Week 23 Y2

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This week I was invited by Forum for the Future  to test out some of my research insights on a workshop with the Future Shapers - a community of young entrepreneurial people exploring people-driven innovation towards sustainable development.   In this workshop, four future scenarios of 2050 were presented and the participants were invited to creatively think about how their own enterprises, practices and personal selves, might evolve given the future context. I was challenged by Forum’s Futures team to think about how through my understanding of communication design as an expanded practice we could engage participants in a more ‘experiential’ understanding of the abstract and complex 2050 scenarios.

How can communication design prompt an understanding of complex future scenarios?

My understanding of communication design and its expanded practice can be summarised as ‘the design of communication’. It includes looking into interaction and experience, as well as visual and the other sensorial components, and how the designed artefacts may trigger conversations within the audience itself.  I will highlite here one important aspect I explored:

Making sustainability personal Each participant was informed to bring a meaningful object with them. These were minimalistic things of the everyday. An object which represented something they care about and would like to preserve into the future. Regardless of the what the object was (we would expect some commonalities such as references to the environment and family) its role was to help personalise the experience and tap into details that the participants themselves recognised and could identify with. This allowed for stream of thought, however in a simple way, about how citizen-driven innovation strategies might help preserve this meaningful object and what it implied.

The everydayness I looked to take advantage of the mundane details which are part of the everyday and can sometimes be disregarded as opportunities to communicate a message. The lunchtime period, which is usually a great space for participants to interact with each other and converse, was seen as an opportunity to bring to life some of the aspects of the 2050 scenarios concerning food. Small tags with messages were inserted into the food plates. These messages were tailored to specific food related issues that may arise within each of the four future scenarios. The participants were then invited to pick out food according to the future scenario they had stepped into. We must here acknowledge the intended contradiction between the messages on the tags and the food displayed. However fictitious and playful, this small detail came across as somewhat unexpected, fulfilling the objective of enhancing the experience - it seemed to be a conversation starter.

 

"On Divergence and Convergence" Research Book1

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This book was produced as part of my first PhD year.It is the research journal containing thoughts, experiements, interviews, reflections, important content to the research.  My practice as a communication designer implies a structured, and messy at the same time, documentation of my work.

On Divergence and Convergence is the title to a year which resembled a DNA strand of intertwining discoveries and nuances of colliding ideas.