5 August 2010

Design for social change and the museum

Be the first to share

Bellagio symposium
From April 12 through April 14, 2010, 22 designers, historians, curators, educators and journalists met at Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Center on Lake Como, in Italy, to discuss the museum’s role in the 21st century in relation to design for social change.

Participants (including Paolo Antonelli, Andrew Blauvelt, Allan Chochinov and John Thackara) from a spectrum of institutions in 11 countries engaged in a far-ranging and illuminating conversation.

Design Observer’s William Drenttel and Change Observer’s Julie Lasky have written an extensive report on this symposium sponsored by the Rockefeller Foundation and organized by Winterhouse Institute.

Here are the key conclusions (copied from the abstract):

  1. The museum can be a collective commons for learning, reflection and critical action, as well as a platform for delivering information and provocation and a stage for learning, social connectedness and critical action. The museum as commons is not only an exhibition space but also a civic arena where people can reflect on the importance and efficacy of social change.
  2. Museums need to move beyond the object so that social design exhibitions are more than concrete displays. In that sense, design should be regarded as a tool for improving life and fostering participatory engagement and social activism.
  3. Museums should be a place where “wicked,” or seemingly intractable social problems of global scope, are addressed — a shared space in which diverse stakeholders can participate in solutions.
  4. The curator’s role may have to evolve and broaden to include skills germane to the complexity of issues around social change and innovation.
  5. Traditional museums can learn from other institutions and organizations that champion design as an agent of social change by stimulating, honoring and publicizing specific achievements on an international platform.

Read report

Be the first to share
30 January 2016
Design thinking for museums
The Design Thinking for Museums site is the outcome of a 2012 partnership between the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) and Stanford’s Hasso Plattner Institute of Design (d.school). It is conceived as a …
29 January 2016
Solving health care problems through design methodology
Stephen Klasko (an MD with an MBA, CEO of Jefferson Health System and Thomas Jefferson University) and Bon Ku (MD, a professor of emergency medicine at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital) joined the Knowledge@Wharton show …
28 January 2016
The Power of Privacy – documentary film
In this half-hour film (commissioned by The Guardian and Silent Circle), Aleks Krotoski travels the world to undergo challenges that explore our digital life in the 21st century. Watch her be stalked and hacked, fight to …
24 January 2016
The grand illusion of empowerment
Financial times journalist/anthropologist Gillian Tett deconstructs the idea that the internet hands power to the people. In fact, she writes, in most countries power remains firmly in the hands of the elite. The bitter — and …
22 January 2016
The power of creativity from below
Anthropologist Michael Thompson believes in the power of creativity from below in solving some of the smaller and bigger problems of our time. "People generally are very creative and innovative. Many anthropological case studies have shown …
11 January 2016
How Eataly has redefined the third place to create a new customer experience
This short reflection on Eataly by Sergio Gutierrez, Ankur Johar, Christian Lillo, Anjali Singh and and Sofia Sourtzis positions it as a "third place". Ray Oldenburg introduced the concept of the third place in 1989 in …
3 January 2016
[Book] Holistic Retail Design
Holistic Retail Design – Reshaping Shopping for the Digital Era By Prof. Philipp Teufel and Prof. Rainer Zimmermann (Peter Behrens School of Arts, University of Applied Sciences Düsseldorf) Frame Publishers September 2015 - 400 pages Abstract (from Dexigner) Written by …
31 December 2015
[Report] Easier Said Than Done
Easier Said Than Done: Why we struggle with healthy behaviours and what to do about it By Nathalie Spencer RSA, December 2015 Many of us know what we should be doing to live healthily, yet many of us …

We are an international experience design consultancy helping companies and organisations to innovate their products, services and processes by putting people and their experiences first.

18 January 2016
Experientia website completely reshaped

Experientia is pleased to announce that we’ve started 2016 with a brand new website. Experientia’s now officially 10 years old, and we decided that the best way to celebrate is by building a new website that showcases our growth – with new projects, new people in the staff, and two new locations in Lausanne and […]

1 January 2016
For when things get personal…
13 October 2015
Experientia report: Design for ageing gracefully

Design for Ageing Gracefully Rethinking Health and Wellness for the Elderly: Public Services Asian Insights & Design Innovation, DesignSingapore Council October 2015

29 September 2015
[Experientia book] Ethnography on elderly health and wellness

As we age, we increasingly depend on public services and the community for support. Well-designed public services can greatly affect the lives of the elderly and their experiences of healthcare. Experientia collaborated with DesignSingapore Council on understanding how the elderly interact with public services and how we can look towards improving their lives with design. […]

2 July 2015
Getting citizens involved in protecting fragile energy environments

A new project funded under the FP7 European Commission framework is getting citizens involved in testing new tools for reducing energy consumption during peak loads, in the hope that its pilot program will set the new state of the art for protecting locations with fragile electricity supplies. One of France’s most fragile regions The Provence-Alpes-Côte […]

5 May 2015
Experientia designer Dohun YuLuck Jang 유록 in Design 4 Disaster

Design 4 Disaster features an engaging illustrated safety manual for ship passengers, a personal project by Experientia designer Dohun YuLuck Jang 유록. After the Korean ferry accident last year, Yuluck (who is Korean) wanted to find a way to make safety manuals more interesting to read. He spent one year designing an interactive safety guide […]

See all articles