Harbinger Consultants

Culture + Complexity + Change

REPORT | Design after the Subject Workshop

Last weekend, Linda participated in another Design Futures workshop with Tony Fry, titled Design after the Subject. She’s written a report for Placing which outlines Fry’s theoretical approach as well as the design task the participants addressed:

We (being a group of seven that reduced to five over the duration of the workshop) initially put together a picture of speed, then ontologically designed against that picture. First, we identified ways in which speed affected environments, sectors, industries and services such as cities, health care, education, capital, economy, work, tourism, leisure and the like and then considered practical design strategies for slowing things down. Practical, in this context, means not causing the system to collapse, so it’s not feasible to simply remove the cars from the city in order to slow it down as the city is fundamentally reliant on cars. ‘Slowing down’ does not merely mean consuming slower, as many formulations of sustainability would suggest, it means redirecting, recognising a non-utopian way of dealing with a problem so that the proposal has a chance of arriving.

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