Cultural Relevance & Awareness
DESLD 5530 Cultural Relevance & Awareness. 2 credits . Fall 1 2016.
Tuesdays, 6–10pm; Lazarus Center, Room 503; 131 W. North Ave Baltimore
Mitchell Sipus firstname.lastname@example.org; Office Hours by Appointment; eClassroom: moodle.mica.edu
Course Theme: The Entrepreneurship Ecosystem of Migrant Communities within Baltimore, Maryland
Course Description: Conventions to create and identify the role of design and its assets vary greatly across and within populations. In Cultural Relevance and Awareness, assumptions about good design are contextualized from distinct cultural perspectives and the nature of “good design” is challenged. Students investigate principles of Grounded Theory, Socio-cultural histories of technology (HASTS/STS) and design research methods that focus on communities of various cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds. Course content veers away from homogenizing concepts such as holism and multiculturalism, but advance toward a post-structuralist design research, entrepreneurship, and design practice.
Class Meetings Expect class time to engage a variety of activities for learning, exploring and presenting your work. Please always have working files with you and available for potential in-class work sessions. We will cover a range of topics over the next eight weeks, including but not limited to: cultural variance, cultural geography, critical theory, actor network theory, ethnography, human-centered design, design thinking, design principles.
Submitting work Assignments are due as determined by the Assignment sheet provided for each pending assignment. NO LATE ASSIGNMENTS ARE ACCEPTED. If extenuating circumstances undermine the ability to submit an assignment, please notify your instructor prior to deadline and provide any relevant documentation.
Final written reports and any accompanying presentation slides must be uploaded directly to the Moodle eClassroom. Assignments should be exported as PDFs and named in the following convention: LastName-ReportName-Date.pdf, e.g. “Brainerd-FinalReport-093016.pdf.”
Students are expected to be familiar and comfortable with uploading and submitting files through the Moodle eClassroom and are encouraged to test this functionality before the first assignment is due. It is the responsibility of each student to test this functionality and communicate any perceived technical problems proactively before assignments are due.
All Assignment Documentation is Emailed to Students and the Document is Archived and Mainted at this Link.
Student Learning Outcomes
- Students will gain a deeper understanding of culture and its role in design and innovation
- Students will be able to better identify and locate how their own perceptions and values fit within complex socio-cultural andscapes so as to navigate adversity and complexity
- Students will learn to measure abstract socio-cultural phenomena with contextually appropriate metrics
- Students will demonstrate the capacity to reflect upon and assess their own growth and learning
- Students will be able to articulate how culture functions, reproduces, transmits, and/or obstructs individual and collective behavior
- Students will collaborate and use multi-disciplinary problem solving strategies toward building new kinds of design practices and business processes
- Students will internalize their new, broader understanding of culture within their creative practices to generate transformative outcomes that are spatio-temporally appropriate
Course Materials and resources
- Your LAPTOP (please bring to every class)
- Smartphone or Tablet (preferablly ios/android with GPS, if not available, please notify instructor and similar device will be provided).
- Journal/Sketchbook — for journal exercises and field research
- Additional materials and/or software will be introduced in class. None will have a cost.
Grading, 100 point scale
- Baltimore Baseline Research— 10
- Baltimore Research Design — 10
- Baltimore Fulcrum Data Collection 1 & 2–20
- Gaziantep Data Analysis for Comparison — 10
- Proposal for intervention/opportunity — 10
- Presentation /Video of Data Narratives — 20
- Self-Review parts 1/2/3–10
Week 1, August 23, T 6–10pm Overview of the course. Introductions. Outline assignments & Opportunity Project.
Lecture 1. Culture within Orders of Design
Activity — Mapping the entire history of ideas
Lecture 2 — The Dominance of Structuralism
Week 2, August 30, T 6–10pm Framing Culture & Dialectical Materialism
- Human Rights and Cultural Relativism 89–106
- Destruction of Memory — Chapter 2, Cultural Cleansing
Sipus, Mitchell. 2001. “Support for al-Shabaab by Diaspora,” Forced Migration Review 39
Week 3, September 6, T 6–10pm Grounded Theory to Grounded Action; Cross-Cultural Design Research Methods Deep Dive
Class Content — Intro Opportunity Project Plan & Intro to Methods
- Intro on Opportunity Project Part 1 and 2
- Ethnography, OSint and GeoInt
In-class Exercise — Past-Tense, Goal Determination, Limiting Beliefs, Timeline,
Studio — Build Teams. Identify Sectors. Determine Methods. Prepare brief on methodology. Build collective resource archive for class and project planning.
1. Reflection and one line plan on how class content can inform personal goals
2. OSint and Mental Map with Google Maps for Baseline Iteration.
3. Start to build Archive and design data management method with teammate
Yiftachel, Oren. 2009. “Critical Theory and ‘gray space’: Mobilization of the colonized. City Vol 13 No 2–3, June-September 240–256
Soini, Katriina. 2001. “Exploring human dimensions of multifunctional landscapes through mapping and map-making.” Landscape and Urban Planning 57, 225–239
Chapter 1 of Charmaz, Kathy. 2007. Constructing Grounded Theory: A Practical Guid through Qualitative Analysis. SAGE Publications LTD: Lond0n
Sipus, Mitchell. 2013. “Qualitative and Ethnographic Research with Fulcum” at Fulcrum Blog, http://www.fulcrumapp.com/blog/qualitative-and-ethnographic-research-with-fulcrum/ Accessed September 6 2016
Week 4, September 13, T 6–10pm Agenda: Opportunity Project Kickoff
Class Content: Guest Lecture, Research Design, Methods Refinement
Studio Groups set Framing, sector priorities, methods, and questions (Due to Professor at of End Class)
Consolidate Research for Baltimore and Syria
Assignment Due — Rapid Research Process (Cog Mapping, Interviews)
Assignment Provided — Finalize Research Design
Chapter 1 & 3 of Smith, Emma Grace. 2016. “The Role of Syrian Refugees in the Sharing Economy and Technology Sector in Germany: A Neoliberal Approach to Integration and Empowerment,” Thesis, Duke University, International Comparative Studies.
Strangler, Dane and Jordan Bell-Masterson.2015 Measuring Entrepreneurial Ecosystem. Kaufman Foundation Research Series on City, Metro, and Regional Entrepreneurship.
Aspen Institute. 2013. Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Diagnostic Toolkit https://assets.aspeninstitute.org/content/uploads/files/content/docs/pubs/FINAL%20Ecosystem%20Toolkit%20Draft_print%20version.pdf
Buck, Stephani. 2015. “Catalyzing Ecosytsems for Entrepreneurship” in MicroLinks: Market Systems. https://www.microlinks.org/blog/catalyzing-ecosystems-entrepreneurship
Week 5, September 20, T 6–10pm Opportunity Project
Assignment Due Beginning of Class — Phase 1 of Baltimore Data, Initial Baltimore and Syria Resource Archive
Class Content — Methods and Tools for Indicator Determination, Informatics, and Analysis
Assignment Given: Phase 1 Indicator Research w/ Fulcrum
Assignment Due End of Class — Rapid Trial/Test with Fulcrum
Bahcekapili, Cengiz and Buket Cetin. 2015. “The Impacts of Forced Migraiton on Regional Economies: The Case of Syrian Refugees in Turkey,” International Business Research.
Maitland, Carleen and Ying Xu. 2016. “A Social Informatics Analysis of Refugee Mobile Phone Use: A Case Study of Za’atari Syrian Refugee Camp,” in CHI Proceedings
Zeisal, John.1981. Inquiry by Design. Chapters 3, 5, & 6
Week 6, September 27, T 6–10pm
Consolidate Data: SWOT & Gap Analysis
Assignent Due: Baltimore Fulcrum Data
Class Content — Prototyping and Design through Data;
Possible Guest Speaker, TBD
Studio — Teams consolidate Fulcrum and Previous Data. Assemble clear presentation of data. Experiment with correlations and other analytics. Discuss and identify indicators for additional data collection ( collect as needed). Initiate Design of Final Presentation and Provide Intervention Pitch.
Assignment Due: Reflection on class activities in relation to readings.
Assignment Given: Phase 2Indicator Research w/ Fulcrum
Reading: Wall, Melissa; Campbell, Madeline; Janbek, Dana. 2015. “Syrian refugees and information precarity” New Media & Society, 1–15
Week 7, October 4, 16 6–10pm From Data to Informatics
Class Content — Cultures, Information, & Post-Structuralism
Reading Due: Artemis — just read as much as possible
Written Assignment Due: Self Review (1 Page minimum)
In-Class Studio —Data Synthesis & Presentation
- Construct and deliver a narrative not a report
- Use data to advance the story
- Introduce intervention at an intelligent point in narrative to sell the entire process, product, and outcome
Suggested Watching: Dan Hill on Dark Matter
Week 8, October 11, T 6–10pm Final Presentations. Presentation of Team DataViz & Suggested steps forward for Intervention
Opportunity Project Presentations and Analysis Discoveries.
Course critique and discussion.
Written Assignment to do In-Class: Self Review Update (1 paragraph minimum)
ATTENDANCE POLICY Students are expected to attend all meetings of each class in which they are enrolled, including Cultural Relevance & Awareness. Unexcused absences from three class meetings will result immediately with a failing grade.
Academic Policy Statements:
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