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Co-Design Futures

Exploring the values and implications of co-design approaches at the PROUD Forum

Nick Dunn was invited to attend the PROUD Forum: Design for Societal Challenges held at the Red Dot Museum, Essen.  An important part of the programme was the series of workshops held one of which, what is the effect of co-design?, sought to identify how to assess a co-design project and its impact. Following five short presentations from co-design project leaders, including Imagination’s Dr Leon Cruickshank, the group then engaged in a sequence of activities that enabled reflection on the complexity, criteria and potential impact of the specific case studies presented and in general.

Using various dynamic and collaborative techniques, each team drew, modelled and discussed key criteria for effective co-design projects and tried to capture the essence of such an approach. This led to excellent, interactive and performance-based presentations by each team as they attempted to communicate their findings to the wider group.

The team Nick was part of established that co-design is crucial in those situations where you wish to build long, immersive and sustainable relationships with different people to investigate a complex design issue. In addition it was also agreed that co-design is particularly effective in enabling participants to tease out “what you don’t know you don’t know!” A lively discussion concluded the programme and an excellent event.

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