Designing (for) Society

7 December, 2008 - 20:32

At the seminar for the Interactive Institute's 10-year anniversary, Ramia Mazé spoke about 'Designing (for) Society'.

Presentation abstract:

Design is often said to be about ‘value creation’. The bottom
line on ‘value’ has traditionally been measured in terms of capital –
economic and brand value, market share and return on investment.
Increasingly, however, we have come to understand and appreciate other
sorts of value(s) that design relates to and influences – in addition
to new constructs such as the 'triple bottom line' in business, social
design, humanitarian design, and critical design provide important
perspectives on current issues of 'social responsibility' and 'cultural

Social and societal issues have long been central at the Interactive Institute. From the start, participatory methods and interface design have helped us develop IT systems that are more inclusive and pleasurable. In recent years, we have engaged critical and social design to reflect on technology in everyday life and future society. Evident in projects such as Static! and Switch!, design research can contribute important examples and methods for addressing issues of environmentalism and social responsibility.