Global Summit on Education and Sustainability
Toolkit so that design educators can go forward.
8 topics over a period of two days. An iterative process that result is something way too complex and rich, but rather than something clear. They realized they were talking about the future of education.
Understandings that came from the Summit (but not in the direction that they had hope -which was to create a toolkit.)
What they discovered was that there was no common language. Not talking about sustainability, but using it as the DNA -- as an understood.
IDEO, Ogilvy Earth, Project H
Realized that a prescribed toolkit wasn't the answer, but one that could change and grow... but be printed (because it was funded by Sappi). Idea about allowing for interations. There's lots of knowledge but what to do with it all. To focus all the knowledge in some direction.
Feeling that need is for distributed intelligence that goes beyond our lifetime.
Rick's position in relation to the conference. He feels like a an interloper. He's not an educator and is an outsider and is viewing from the outsider. Educators take every single student seriously. As a journalist he's looking for something extraordinary. He has to see from two directions.
Refers to Living Principles diagramming placing First Things First manifesto on the ideological extreme. (Emigre 1999). Rick got a lot of feedback from students and it he was happy that it provoked discussion - which was the intention. Still evokes sceptical questions. What came of FTF is that it might be internalized. A reversal of priorities and A new kind of meaning where what the manifesto was a about -- politics. Perhaps we need to more political about it?
In the 90s there were a lot of books and documents reflecting this difference -- which was really about the critique of capitalism. Consumption and Consumer behavior is the condition -- an Empire of Signs.
We keep coming back to what are we really going to do to change ourselves.
Ken Garland- Keeps his FTF message going and others have put forth ideas of austerity - Vows of Chastity manifesto, Eatock's "No Manifesto." Represents a paring down -- like Experimental Jetset. Conviction of "preferring not too."
The New Panacea: Design Thinking
Rick is skeptical. Idea was popularized through Time and Bruce Nussbarum in Business Week. Designers don't know what design thinking is. If design is going to have a future it needs to become aware of design thinking. Rick is particularly skeptical of the rhetoric which in some way in packaging the obvious -- like "human-centered" or "design thinking" Understanding that the motivation regardless of how its packaged is about selling product.
There's a sense of vagueness about we're actually talking about. Bruno Munari talks about a balance life.
Design as Culture: An ethical imperative
The ethics that Rick want to raise is "in what way design culture?" Designers are not good at talking about in what way is design culture. The argument is not made fully. Rick is hearing rhetoric that designers were too occupied with form not taking the reader, the consumer, etc. now we have to involve people but what are we involving the user in? What is just giving an illusion of participation? Is it just giving a feeling of involvement without really giving agency. (He recognizes that he's being provocative.)
He thought design was saying interesting things and that why as a non-designer he became interested in design. It was not a passive experience he realized. No just about consumerism. A fully aesthetic and visualized culture is important and has value - a necessity in society! Don't lose sight of the visual dimension. What will happen next if we give up on the visual expression it will emerge somewhere else - it will come from someone else than designers. We would all be out of jobs.
Czech posters from early 60s. It was a close knit community. There was an outdoor exhibition as the posters were shown in a cluster. Vitality freedom exhilaration. What a graphic culture has accomplished historically and what it still is capable of accomplishing. It's about culture because it contributes to our visual lives. It demonstrates the possibility of c
"The true poltical potential of a designed object is foremost located in its aesthetic dimension." Experimental Jetset, 2009. The young designers are say its not in the participation but show the richness of life. This is a deeply empowering thing to do.
"If you're not part of the problem, you can't be part of of the solution." (unknown)
No longer capable to being successful without integrating Design with Sustainability with Business. We have to navigate the unknown: Integrating Design Process/Integrative thinking/"Design Thinking" (design) with systems thinking/eco/env economics/stateholder engagement (sustainability) with markets economics/"new business"/Leadership & collaboration/entrepreneurship/service oriented (business).
What is taught in Nathan's MBA program: Principles Frameworks Tools Strategies
Principles: Systems thinking, Multi-stakeholder Engagement, Multi-Disciplinary Teamwork
Tools (depending on what's been assessed/built): Life Cycle Assessment, Total Beauty (Cyclic, Social, Safe, Efficient, Social), Biomimicry, SROI/SI, Sustainability Helix, LEED, SCORE
Strategies: Major strategies are Reduce (Design for Use, Dematerializiation, Substitution, Localization, Trans-materializalation, Inform-materialization, Reuse (a mustard jar that is a drinking glass), Recycle (things can be easily disassembled), Restore
Teaching & Pedagogy
Pedagogy: Core theme and value in every course and isn't optional. (Not tacked on to curriculum) Instead of calling a class "sustainable" just incorporate as the way its done. Doing and making is central and the project made has to be evaluated and they have to describe the framework of evaluation. Here's an evaluation of Barbie:
Examples: Toy Bank, Rewards system for saving resources.
Natural Capitalism, Cradle to Cradle, Design the Problem...
Open Source: Everything from the class is available on line: nathan.com/thoughts
Tired of talking about sustainability. Need to accept and move on. We have a lot figured out. The will is what's needed. It's integrated into the skills. Put it into place so we can go on to other conversations: Like Consumerism (not consumption)
Need to make things that we do consume as more meaningful and have more meaningful experiences.
The current Living Principles website lives here, but a new one is being launched soon as that will serve as a nexus for resources and discussion that includes a wider design community. It will also include a glossary, postings of events, and videos of talks. Beyond the frameworks and website are tools — an "action kit" will be released in around 6 months to enable the turning of theory into action. For example, a game that looks a problem from different points of view. Everything will Open Source for everyone and every organization to use.
"At its core, sustainability is about people. It's the Golden Rule applied to the global marketplace. Empathy writ large in hundreds of languages. Prosperity refined."
Rick's primary interest is "real human presence." This translates in his practice into working with others as well as how he engages himself. These modes are the key to his ability to sustain his practice. Notable is Rick's use of programming to generate complex information compositions as well as distinguish some of his very distinctive visual expression, but also the efficiency afforded of a "coded" working process allow Rick the time to "give it back" through self-generated projects and through working with students.
A few things he's working on now are with ArcheWorks - an alternative "Think Tank/Do Tank" "school" to affect design and policy. He also created Moving Design as a personal effort to to reshape public policy. For example, the project "One Drop" is a curriculum and workbook for grade school students to give them a better understanding of water conservation issues but also the project prompts and facilitates action by the students themselves. He received funding for the project but its difficult getting it going because of the political issues involved. Design Interventions on Water is his latest initiative.
WASHINGTON — Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, the leader of American and NATO forces in Afghanistan, was shown a PowerPoint slide in Kabul last summer that was meant to portray the complexity of American military strategy, but looked more like a bowl of spaghetti....Enemy Lurks in Briefings on Afghan War - PowerPoint - NYTimes.com.