Reconsidering Power and Place in Systemic Design: Strategies for scaling scree and scaling deep

Format: Papers, RSD11, Topic: Cases & Practice, Topic: Learning & Education, Topic: Methods & Methodology

Danielle Lake

Elon University

Systemic design practitioners, educators, and researchers are calling for design strategies that seek to scale systems change efforts through more participatory and transdisciplinary design and assessment practices. This paper responds to this call through a case study analysis of the Power and Place Collaborative. The Collaborative is a community-first, equity-centered, emergent, and situated educational approach to designing complex social systems change. Beginning in 2018 and formalized in the summer of 2020, the Collaborative has worked to catalyze, sustain, and scale social change through emergent design interventions that began with the recording, preserving, and presenting untold stories from across the local community. Initial collaborative efforts have led to community oral histories and digital stories, new cross-institutional programs and curricula, visual and multimedia mapping, public screenings, community, government, and educational workshops, art exhibits, walking tours, community dialogues, social media campaigns, open access, online archival platforms, and more. The design of this collaborative, its practices, and some initial mixed methods research findings are documented, highlighting the value of emergent, community-first transdisciplinary practices and relational, place-based immersion for fostering systems changes that scale deep and scree.

 Keywords: scree-scaling, deep-scaling, power and place, place-based education, transdisciplinarity, participatory design, community-first




Citation Data

Author(s): Danielle Lake
Year: 2022
Title: Reconsidering Power and Place in Systemic Design: Strategies for scaling scree and scaling deep
Published in: Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design
Volume: RSD11
Article No.: 154
Host: University of Brighton
Location: Brighton, UK
Symposium Dates: October 3–16, 2022
First published: 21 September 2022
Last update: 30 April 2023
Publisher Identification: ISSN 2371-8404

Copyright Information

Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design (ISSN 2371-8404) are published annually by the Systemic Design Association, a non-profit scholarly association leading the research and practice of design for complex systems: 3803 Tønsberg, Norway (922 275 696).


Open Access article published under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 International License. This permits anyone to copy and redistribute the material in any medium or form according to the licence terms.

Suggested citation format (APA)

Author(s). (20##). Article title. Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design, RSD##. Article ##.

Publishing with RSD

Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design are published online and include the contributions for each format.

Papers and presentations are entered into a single-blind peer-review process, meaning reviewers see the authors’ names but not vice versa. Reviewers consider the quality of the proposed contribution and whether it addresses topics of interest or raises relevant issues in systemic design. The review process provides feedback and possible suggestions for modifications.

The Organising Committee reviews and assesses workshops and systems maps & exhibits with input from reviewers and the Programme Committee.

Editor: Cheryl May
Peter Jones
Ben Sweeting

The Scholars Spiral

In 2022, the Systemic Design Association adopted the scholars spiral—a cyclic non-hierarchical approach to advance scholarship—and in 2023, launched Contexts—The Systemic Design Journal. Together, the RSD symposia and Contexts support the vital emergence of supportive opportunities for scholars and practitioners to publish work in the interdisciplinary field of systemic design.

The Systemic Design Association's membership ethos is to co-create the socialization and support for all members to contribute their work, find feedback and collaboration where needed, and pursue their pathways toward research and practice outcomes that naturally build a vital design field for the future.


Verified by MonsterInsights