Select Page


Design for The Other Side: Prison Reforms through building resilience

Format: Papers, RSD6, Topic: Policy & Governance

Surya Teja Bachu, Aravind Ratheesh, Bharat Kashyap, Julia Andreyyeva and Praveen Nahar

Prison Reforms
Systems resilience
Design Thinking


“The Other Side” is an academic applied design research project in the context of Prison and Prison Industries in Ahmedabad, India.

From past few decades we believe that people who commit criminal activity is prisoned and is generally coined as Criminal for rest of his lifetime. This project is about understanding what makes a person to commit crime, to introspect and change society’s perspective towards prison system, to transform small scale industries inside prison into creative work spaces through various design practices, to make inmate a creator of things within the time of conviction.

Our mission is to build Prison environment as a place of reformation, a place of transforming mindset of inmates to think creatively through design thinking framework and adapt with socio-economic difficulties as a returning citizen. Idea is also to expose inmates in a creative environment to bring transferable creative skills through co-creation and in long term – better communication, teamwork, conceptual design skills, pragmatic making skills and enterprise skills which will support them to flourish through employment through Central prison of Gujarat

Design methodology

In this applied design research project, understood the prison system holistically to discover the cause of growing crime rate, conducted co-creation workshops to exchange tools and methodologies with prison system which assists inmate to build social resilience and economic growth. Designed a structured methodology to bringsocial and culture cohesion inside prison.

Further analysis through zaltman metaphor process and workshops with inmates, officers helped to understand creative thinking skills, lifestyle in relationship with environment in prison. Analyzing and synthesizing the data aimed at coming up with structural solution to build socio-friendly environment between inmates and society. s

Design Interventions

In the wake of experiencing and directing rehashed visits to the prison, acquired numerous bits of knowledge how the framework functions. What’s more was watching the distinction in how the male and femaleinmate’s territory, prisoner zone works, every bit of knowledge was distinctive. Attempts to go inside and out, to re-discover association how things functions with respect to others enhanced the scope of intervention.

Through deeper understanding and synthesis of the prison system,through discussions with Criminologists, Exempted Inmates, Psychologists, Lawyers, Journalists, Social Reformers, Educators, Design Advocates,Social Innovators, Students, Police Department and public it was possible to design case studies to facilitate workshops.

Reflection of how certain issues emerge because of absence of appropriate correspondence gained to develop numerous interventions. Additionally mapped the experience we had in the wake of experiencing the procedure and the behavioral changes of the authorities and their constraints. Also, blemishes in the framework.

The workshops were conducted in all possible domains to know the possibilities of co-creation in an unfamiliar setting. Some of the workshops were facilitated rather than conducting ourselves to get the best outcome in a short period of time.

Justice through Reformation

Insights from the research and the workshops, to make the society aware about the reformation of the prisoner and on the other hand to know the perspective of the society, to create a trigger and create a sensory etching for the same, conducted campaigns through diverse social medium like social platform, Media, Movies, Radio FM, store by inmates in public spaces with JUSTICE THROUGH REFORMATION campaign


With positive welcome & support we are definitely certain that it’s possible to come with diverse outputs which supports inmates to build creative thoughts and self-sustain.Creative activities in the prison environmentassists building prison as home for mindful thinking through creating inspirational platform, Building creative workshops to come up with different creative product solutions.

Build Product & Services

Going through creative thought process for the products developed in the prison to associate inmates with the products they develop and it also encourages to come up with different creative solutions and unfold the opportunities of intervention to explore unexplored.

Unfolding Communication Barriers

Constructing a platform where the inmates come closer to each other to understand and share their opinions about their well-being helps them to build a brotherhood feeling. It shouldn’t end here, it should be taken ahead to further where there is social platform for peer to peer communication between Inmates, police department and Society.

Create Values for Experience

To organize creative activities, to stand for social cause, to invite social innovators and reformers who like to co-create with inmates for well-being of the society and to market and expand the product scope of the inmates, to provide opportunities to employ inmates and further widen scope through funding for inmates who like to be a creative entrepreneur by banks and social organizations.

This constitutes a democratic system which stands for ONE FOR ALL & ALL FOR ONE.




Citation Data

Author(s): OCTOBER 2017
Title: Design for The Other Side: Prison Reforms through building resilience
Published in: Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design
Article No.:
Symposium Dates:
First published: 12 October 2017
Last update:
Publisher Identification:
Verified by MonsterInsights