design 360 by WDO
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design 360 by WDO

10 designers share their goals for 2022

From design advocacy to community empowerment, learn how top designers from around the world are striving towards a better future.

This year, the idea that we work and live in a complex, dynamic and networked world is coming to life in both positive and negative ways. As a result, I want to go beyond the traditional sustainability targets, or even our corporate targets, and set some personal targets for how we work at the Centre for Inclusive Design. I want to think about how do we design for dignity, trust and connection for all of us. How do we design for constructive dialogue even when we have opposing views and how we design for the greater good. This will only work if many of us move in our own ways to make it happen, realizing choices we make along the journey are as important as the outcome.

Manisha Amin
CEO, Centre for Inclusive Design
Australia

Personality and as an organization these pandemic has made me rethink a lot of previous preconceived ideas and immerse myself on a new set of mind and after this intermittent lockdown months that gave rise to reflections of all kinds , and make our goals different that what I want that in the past as a human being and professionally , one of them, about our most intimate space, our homes. From a few hours of sleep and fleeting moments of haste before every morning, to slow witnesses of new routines. Rediscovering how we live and how we adapt these spaces as havens of peace and rest, it is here where the true role of the design of our objects, spaces, lighting, greenery become evident. Discovering the hidden potential of our immediate surroundings by transforming our everyday spaces into areas of meditation, exercise, work, fine cooking, cinema and so much more. Formulating a conscious slowdown for a new personal world, more vibrant, human, comfortable and sustainable.

At a time when our homes have become sanctuaries, it was essential to find an ideal house to give way to this healing space. A home conceived from the new horizon of the pandemic, remote work and social distancing. We seek to emphasize styles that last, giving a new dimension to the personal and the meaning of a home. It’s from this reflection that as head of MXTC and DWM connects my every day life and practice with design leaders, spirits of innovative and active minds, to undertake a joint methodology of selection of many Mexican companies aware of the emotional effect of our surroundings in one’s being.

In an increasingly virtual and fast-paced world, slow processes and high-quality materials are So vital for designers, makers and users of spaces. Now more than ever, we will focus on local and low-impact production, as well as heritage and ancestral rituals that inspire us to reconnect with our roots. “Localism” has become a priority for many consumers. Industry and crafts merge in the search for new aesthetic languages to experiment and develop new materials capable of solving the deep crisis faced today, exploring raw materials and circular economy for a regenerative future.

Our interaction with cross-sector stakeholders will help us in the creation of personal shelters, flexible to accommodate different stages of our lives and provide support in terms of physical and emotional health.

The planning of all our different initiatives make us become witnesses of the collective effort and acknowledgement that our work is more relevant and necessary than ever. As well as homage to all the extraordinary people who work in the creative industries, by telling a new story and capturing an incredibly motivating moment, reinforced by great creative talents who shall bring a new horizon of ideas and innovation to their work and to our lives.

Emilio Cabrero
Director, Design Week Mexico
Mexico

I believe in the power of design as a tool for transformation and one of my goals, as the Director from Brazil Design Center, has always been to promote design. I’ve been working on this for the past 21 years and in 2021, we managed to fulfill the dream of launching the Design for a Better World Award. This award aims to highlight solutions that positively impact society in search of a better world. The award was a success and in 2022, I am working to consolidate this initiative with various causes that make a difference and show how much design can, in fact, contribute to society, the environment and communities. Design is strategic for all of us.

Letícia Castro
Superintendent Director, Brasil Design Center
Brazil

As an urban designer, I’m honoured to have been elected as the youngest independent councillor to serve the City of Sydney, together with Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore and Deputy Lord Mayor Jess Scully. We are progressive, independent and community-led.

I’m motivated by our team’s track record of co-designing with citizens towards city-making. We consulted the public for the City’s long-term strategic plan, where 97% of Sydneysiders told us they wanted stronger climate action. We collaborated with locals through a ‘Citizens Jury’ model, where I was involved in facilitating the community’s 2050 vision for Sydney.

I’m committed to design excellence and sustainability. Our City will reduce emissions by 70% by 2030, and have now ambitiously achieved that goal 9 years early in 2021. It’s inspiring to see the switch of our city’s operations to 100% powered by renewable energy over the past year. Using electricity generated from regional wind and solar farms, this green energy deal is the largest of its kind in Australia.

As part of Lord Mayoral team, I’ll continue championing design to solve our community’s challenges, especially with those who are most vulnerable, on a COVID-safe economic recovery towards a creative, fair and sustainable Sydney.

HY William Chan
Architect and Councillor, City of Sydney
Australia

For 2022 I have several objectives/goals, both professionally and personally. The first is to allocate more quality time to meaningful projects that I really like to be part of, like the DESIS Network, and spend more time with my students. Coordinating the DESIS Network also implies trying to get the academic and scientific design community more involved in projects related to social innovation and sustainability, especially at a time of climate emergency like the one we are living in, and of necessary reconnection with others after this long and hard pandemic period. In this context, I would like to have more design schools implementing DESIS Labs, so one of my goals for this year is to have 5 more labs joining the network.

Another goal as director of Design Factory Aveiro, researcher and design professor at University of Aveiro is to develop more partnerships with other higher education institutions (both nationally and internationally) so that we can have more collaborations between schools and students to share knowledge and good practices. I also aim to create more partnerships to involve society in the teaching-learning challenges so that the knowledge produced, and the projects developed can give answers to society’s real problems and, at the same time, highlight the fundamental value of Design.

On a personal level I want to travel more as this is one of my favorite ways of learning. Finally, after two years of the pandemic, I want to spend more time with my friends and all the people that are dear to me.

Teresa Franqueira
Associate Professor, Department of Communication and Art
University of Aveiro
Portugal

I am currently responsible for managing and supporting a design community for young Korean designers called the ‘Korea Design Membership.’ To be more specific, I play a key role in providing young designers hands-on experience by organizing and implementing projects with global companies like LG, Samsung and BMW. And using the Korea Design Membership and the aforementioned projects as a foundation, I hope to establish a framework for a future-oriented design education. Under this framework, design students and designers-to-be will have the opportunity to obtain skill sets that one cannot obtain at school but is essential as a professional designer.

Another ambition that I have is to broaden the minds of young designers. Designers must be able to offer solutions from a diverse perspective for improvement and innovation in various fields. And it is pivotal that I be able to provide them an environment where they are exposed to socio-economic issues such as the environment, gender equality, social and cultural diversity through various means including design projects, workshops and international camps.

Inho Lee
Manager, Korea Institute of Design Promotion
South Korea

One of my 2022 goals is to rethink our current design education system. Besides hardcore design skills, what are the human skills such as creative leadership, team building, and design ethics that we want our design students to acquire and cultivate? How do we want them to apply the design process to drive the conversation to empower people? What are the most critical worldwide emerging problems that we need to focus on? How do we bridge the gap between industry and academia to form a sustainable symbiotic relationship? How do we better prepare to solve complicated, systemic challenges in the era of transformation?

All these complex systemic challenges indicate that designers’ roles and responsibilities have become more important. It makes me reflect that a designer not only serves as a problem solver as in our traditional role in industry. A designer also acts as a culture shaper to make a positive social impact.

Sheng-Hung Lee
Chair, IDSA Boston | Researcher, MIT AgeLab | Fellow, MIT Office of Sustainability
USA

A friend of mine recently shared with me a practice she does each New Year — choosing a word to set her intention and focus her energy throughout the next 12 months. It inspired me to set my intention for 2022, and the word that resonated with me was “service.” As I step into leadership roles in my design work, volunteering, and community service, I’m reminded of my responsibility to serve the communities and teams with which I collaborate. My goal for 2022 is to become someone who uses their design skills in service to others. Whether it’s centering the user in my design practice creating medical devices, or creating content and resources for the community, this is an opportunity to better listen to and serve the end users, stakeholders, and human beings impacted by my work. This theme has resonated for me so powerfully already this year, and I’ve been humbled by how much I have left to learn. By setting this intention, I hope to become a better listener, supporter, ally, cheerleader, leader, advocate, designer, friend, and whatever else 2022 will throw my way!

Caterina Rizzoni
Co-Founder, Design Allyship
USA

Today we have the most important design brief to develop and execute in the history of mankind — to design a future world that’s conducive to life and wellbeing, that enables people and planet to thrive for 10 000 generations and more. The human race is the chief designer of our man-made world, and as a collective we are all responsible to design a world that we can all feel proud to live work and play in.

My first goal for 2022 is to continue to advocate for this global activation and to help identify the key components for this crucial design process that urgently need transformation. My second goal is to continue my advocacy for the urgent development of creative intelligence in all children to develop a higher order of thinking for our future generations and address the skill shortage of the past and present. My third goal is to collaborate and create accessible platforms that amplify the significant work of change makers already working towards achieving this design brief to ignite a global revolution of change and transformation because only together can we design a just and prosperous future for the planet, our children, and their offspring.

Suné Stassen
Co-Founder and CEO, Open Design Afrika
South Africa

One of my goals for 2022 is to help the perception of Decolonization, Diversity, and Inclusion seem less risky to institutions and organizations. In 2020–2021 coming out of Indigenous land and water activism, Black Lives Matter, and COVID-19, global institutions made commitments to diversity, inclusion, equity, and in some places decolonization. Now that institutions are seeing what that actually means, they are seeing it as a risk and pulling back on those commitments. Thus in 2022, I want to double down on showing organizations the benefits of taking these risks in spite of their fears.

Dori Tunstall
Dean of Design, Ontario College of Art and Design University (OCAD)
Canada

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