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Systemic Design Contributions to Responsible Design Education

Format: Interactives, RSD11, Topic: Learning & Education, Topic: Socioecological Design

Joanna Boehnert, Matt Sinclair, and Marianna J. Coulentianos

Responsible design reframes the social and ecological consequences, boundaries, and agencies of design in ways that allow designers to operate in more responsible ways. With responsible design, we use design strategies and tools to address complex eco-social problems. Despite the potential in this space, Responsible Design Education faces significant challenges in shifting institutional priorities in Design Schools. The Responsible Design Research Group (RDRG) at Loughborough University has established six principles, which we attempt to embed in our research, teaching, and practice. We see RD as ethical, pluriversal, planet-centric, decolonial, transdisciplinary, and finally optimistic (RDRG, Lboro uni web, 2021; Boehnert, Sinclair, and Dewberry, 2022). Other institutions are also building capacity in this area. We also note that the University of the Arts London has also made responsible design a strategic priority (UAL, 2019). Ensuring such principles are foundational in teaching rather than subsidiary or optional is the focus of this activity.

This session follows a workshop at DRS2022 with the intention of engaging the systemic design community in this conversation to map pathways to responsible design education.

Keywords: responsible design, education, mapping

Activity description

The aim of the activity session is to briefly discuss and map Systemic Design contributions to Responsible Design education. First, I will introduce the paper Sustainable and Responsible Design Education: Tensions in Transitions (Boehnert, Sinclair, and Dewberry, 2022), the previous DRS2022 workshop, and the survey. I will then introduce the activity. We will then take ten minutes for small group discussions (or discussions with a partner). The activity will end with a feedback session where participants are also encouraged to upload any insights to a Miro board online.

10-minutes – Introduction

10-minutes – Table discussions (if room has table) – or discussions with a partner (in a room with no tables such as a lecture theatre).

10-minutes – Feedback to the group. A link to an online Miro board is shared so participants can upload key ideas and contributions.

using stickies and a board to map




Citation Data

Author(s): Joanna Boehnert, Matt Sinclair, and Marianna J. Coulentianos
Year: 2022
Title: Systemic Design Contributions to Responsible Design Education
Published in: Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design
Volume: RSD11
Article No.: 073
Host: University of Brighton
Location: Brighton, UK
Symposium Dates: October 3–16, 2022
First published: 25 September 2022
Last update: 30 April 2023
Publisher Identification: ISSN 2371-8404
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