counter

Putting People First

Daily insights on user experience, experience design and people-centred innovation
Audience Business Culture Design Locations Media Methods Services Social Issues

Children


Disabled


Elderly


Gender


Teens


Advertising


Branding


Business


Innovation


Marketing


Mechatronics


Technology


Architecture


Art


Creativity


Culture


Identity


Mobility


Museum


Co-creation


Design


Experience design


Interaction design


Presence


Service design


Ubiquitous computing


Africa


Americas


Asia


Australia


Europe


Italy


Turin


Blogging


Book


Conference


Media


Mobile phone


Play


Virtual world


Ethnography


Foresight


Prototype


Scenarios


Usability


User experience


User research


Education


Financial services


Healthcare


Public services


Research


Tourism


Urban development


Communications


Digital divide


Emerging markets


Participation


Social change


Sustainability


August 2010
5 August 2010

Design for social change and the museum

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

3 August 2010

Mobile youth activism around the world

Mobile activism
A couple of years ago I wrote about Mobile Revolutions, a blog about mobile phones, youth and social change by Lisa Campbell Salazar.

The blog also supported TakingITMobile, an international study on youth mobile communications that she completed as a part of her Master of Environmental Studies at Canada’s York University. And her key findings are well worth taking a look at:

The fastest spreading communications technology the world has seen yet, mobile phones are rapidly changing the face of youth activism globally. TakingITMobile is a community-based research study conducted in partnership with the social network TakingITGlobal that examines how youth leaders across the globe (Campbell Salazar surveyed twenty countries) use mobile communications to create social change within their local communities and internationally. Survey participants (n = 565) paint a picture of the diversity of mobile youth activism around the world.

It was found that the majority of youth reported using their mobile phones to generate Citizen Media to share their message globally, mobilize protests, fundraise, educate their peers and spread solidarity.

TakingITMobile participants were passionate about a number of global issues, including the Environment (39%), Human Rights (36%), Poverty (28%), Health (24%), Peace (23.8%), HIV/AIDS (22.4%) and Violence (11.6%). While the most common mobile feature was Voice Calls (75%), TakingITMobile participants used a variety of mobile phone features, including Text Messages (46%), Web Browsing (38%), Social Media (27%), News (26%) and Photography (22%).

It was also discovered that youth who own smart phones are more likely to use their phones for activism (81%) than youth who don’t (71%). As well, females are much less likely (70%) to use their phones for activism than males. Youth ages 25-29 show higher levels of activism (84%) than youth in their teens (67%), early 20s (75%) and 30s (75%). GDP per capita was an influencing factor on both monthly costs, monthly average number of minutes used, number of SMS used and internet data used.

Overall it was found that participants from countries with high GDP per capita received cheaper services, with the exception of very high income nations such as Canada and the United States.

A number of barriers were identified for mobile youth activists, including cost of services (32%) cost of mobile phones (10%) as well as network coverage (9%) were the biggest barriers to accessing mobile phones.

1 August 2010

Reputation managers addressing our internet footprints

Mark Zuckerberg
In the modern digital age where seemingly everything and everyone is online, a new industry is emerging to “manage” the internet footprint that people and businesses leave online. “Reputation managers” can clean up and shape a person’s online history: burying the damaging stuff and promoting the good. The Guardian reports.

“Experts say that the huge growth of the internet has in effect created a “permanent memory” online that can be searched by anyone. Embarrassing statements, and photographs, or angry attacks by spiteful ex-friends once faded away. But no longer. […]

There are now many firms offering help in keeping people’s online history safe. They include companies and websites like Online Reputation Manager, Reputation Professor, Reputation Defender and Reputation Management Partners.”

Read article