University of Johannesburg

The Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture (FADA) at University of Johannesburg offers programmes in eight creative disciplines, expanding these fields beyond their traditional boundaries through internal and external collaborations. It has a strong focus on sustainability and relevance, and engages actively with the dynamism, creativity and diversity of Johannesburg in imagining new approaches to art and design education. Equipped with state-of-the art, custom-built facilities, the Faculty is staffed by highly regarded academics, artists and designers.

The Faculty is home to approximately 1 300 students who study and work in the custom-built FADA Building on the Bunting Road Campus. 

Many of our graduates are employed in South Africa or internationally in diverse areas of industry, or work as freelance designers, architects or independent artists. Whatever their preference, they have been properly prepared as professionals through creative and entrepreneurial development, which are key factors in the programmes offered.

Transforming the Training: Ethical considerations in Re-designing an Incubation Model aimed to Train Aspiring Fashion Design Entrepreneurs

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Discipline: 

Fashion, Jewellery & Textile Design

Empowerment incubation is a strategy to address unemployment in South Africa. It was determined during 2013 that 50% of jobs were lost in the South African Clothing and Textile Industry since 2003. Contrariwise, this situation has presented opportunities for prevailing local fashion design businesses to collaborate on government funded initiatives that promote transformation and empowerment linked to entrepreneurial opportunities.

Architecture and agency: ethics and accountability in teaching through the application of Open Building principles

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Architecture & Built Environment

This paper will explore the notion of ethics in the built environment, and professional accountability, topics which are generally sidelined or given little direct consideration in teaching and practice. However, this status quo is increasingly being questioned. Built environment educators and practitioners need now to develop the intellectual and skill resources to address new questions, formulate a position, and set guidelines to be able to incorporate and make these ‘measurable’ in the performance of educators and practitioners, and for achieving a level of accountability.

Corporate social responsibility: An exploration of initiatives in clothing brands

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Discipline: 

Fashion, Jewellery & Textile Design

Ethics and accountability in design appear to have increased momentum as individuals and corporations are increasingly conscious of the detrimental implications of immoral business practices. The accountability and responsibility of both individuals and organisations are significant to business practice. This has become increasingly apparent due to the role business must play if humanity and the environment are to thrive in future. Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is mounting in emphasis within corporations, as identified through various bodies of research. This paper positions ethics and accountability in design practice from the lens of CSR initiatives.

The Firma Model: A Tool for Resolving Complex Societal Problems

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Discipline: 

Design Education Research

As the focus of design broadens to include problem solving located in complex societal systems the emphasis in design education must shift accordingly. Knowledge of and competence in conducting research within the scope of design practice, and using insights gained from research to conceptualise appropriate solutions is a necessity that design students urgently require.  In support of this need, this paper  will  introduce  and  describe  the  Firma  Model,  a  meta-framework  that  spans  the  human- centered design process, which aims to assist the design student and educator in grappling with complex problems.

Future fit, socially responsible fashion designers: The role of fashion education

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Discipline: 

Fashion, Jewellery & Textile Design

The multifaceted and complex phenomena of ethics and accountability have relevance for the current discourse of fashion design. This is evident in the choice of materials used, the conditions under which clothing is produced, as well as how designers think about and implement the practice of fashion. Fashion practice has environmental and ethical impacts that ultimately connect human wellbeing and society with sustainable practice.

Mr Paterson's rounded testimony: ethics, intersubjectivity and the interview

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Discipline: 

Design Education Research

As the interview as a method of data gathering has gained in popularity in the disciplines of art and design, templates of consent letters are generated in their hundreds, and the absence of a duly signed document  —  in  a  research  output  using  humans  as  a  source  of  data  —  usually  renders  the undertaking unethical and invalid. However, in the rush to protect the institution and its agents against litigation, it is perhaps forgotten that the signing of the obligatory letter is only a first, technical, step in a personal encounter between individuals.

Ethics in design and issues of social class: reflecting on the learning unit: Design and the Construction of Class Distinction

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Discipline: 

Product & Industrial Design

The second year Design Studies learning unit “Design and the Construction of Class Distinction” (BA Communication Design, Industrial Design, University of Johannesburg) introduces students to definitions of social class in terms of capitalism (Olin-Wright 2008, Goldthorpe 1980, Crompton 1998, 2003) as well as to Bourdieusian concepts of habitus, field and capital (Bourdieu 1989; Weininger 2005, Bennett, et al 2010; Jenkins 2003; Grenfell 2003).

Wicked ethics in Design

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Discipline: 

Media & Communications Design

Wicked problems are wicked because, amongst other things, understanding problems as existing in society, at the intersection of many possible points of views held by a variety of potential stakeholders introduces indeterminacy. Ethical frameworks in this context may also be multiple and may exist in harmony or dis-harmony alongside each other.

Framing Complexity: an experience-led approach to designing user research

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Discipline: 

Media & Communications Design

Human-Centered Design (HCD) methods have been identified as valuable and effective approaches to designing with and for people, but is also due to complexity and indeterminacy, often difficult to practice. With the popularisation of HCD in contemporary design education, and the subsequent emphasis of human-centered research an ethical question arises as to whether design students are adequately prepared to engage with the type of research that more and more they are expected to conduct.

The Betterness of Braamfontein

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Discipline: 

Graphic Design & Visual Art

In this paper, we argue that the current environmental information system of Braamfontein is problematic as it is ethically unconsidered and overwhelmingly bias towards the interests of commercial  stakeholders  -  over  those  of  the  residents,  workers,  students  and  visitors.  While  a business is justified to act in a conceited manner, we believe that information provided to the public in a public space needs to be more utilitarian, servicing the needs of the majority over those of the few.

Whose creative expression is it anyway? A conceptual framework proposed to facilitate an authentic creation process of fashion design mood boards

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Discipline: 

Fashion, Jewellery & Textile Design

Repurposing images has become an integral part of the ideation phase of fashion design processes. The use of online images presents both a challenge and an opportunity for fashion design students who use images of others to communicate a design concept through mood boards. The challenge pertains to the authenticity of their design concepts.

Although the authors of this paper acknowledge the importance of referencing of visual material as a strategy to prevent plagiarism, the argument is made that compilation of mood boards with existing images can be further explored, especially with regard to the accountability of an individual in relation to the concept authenticity.

Do the right thing- combat our unsustainable future with design education

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Discipline: 

Design Education Strategy

Governments, policy makers and environmental activists across the globe, entered the 21st century with a renewed focus in combatting the impact of humanities unsustainable practices. To achieve this goal a paradigm shift towards being environmentally responsible and accountable is required in which humanity will have to adopt radical personal change. This paper therefore aims to address the unsustainable future that humanity faces through investigating the role of education as agents of change in motivating sustainable practices and inspiring personal, ethical conduct amongst university students.

 

The role of the industrial design educator in equipping design students to be ethical decision makers

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Discipline: 

Product & Industrial Design

The role of the design educator is to mediate learning and equip students to effectively contribute to their specific field once they graduate. With an ever-increasing demand for the ethical consideration of the sustainability of products and the impact of the manufacture thereof, so too the role of the educator should compensate and prepare learners accordingly. This paper aims to investigate the social and environmental responsibilities of industrial design professionals by referring to the works of key authors as well as current industry practices.

Supporting a community through design: Melville Johannesburg

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Discipline: 

Media & Communications Design

In 2012 the Melville Community Development Organisation (MCDO) approached the Department of Strategic Communications at the University of Johannesburg for a collaboration between the University and the Melville community, with the support of the Melville Residence Association (MRA). These Melville institutions requested groups of Honours students to research and propose a solution for the urban degeneration within the area, as perceived by its businesses, tourists and residents.

Embracing a culture of Active Citizenship in Interior Design education

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Discipline: 

Interior & Furniture Design

Citizenship implies association and involvement in a community. Even though the conditions of involvement can be specified by government laws, citizenship is in fact not only a matter of politics, but actually an issue of culture and experience. It can therefore be described as a status and as a set of attitudes, associations and expectations that go beyond territorial boundaries. Active citizenship is the viewpoint that citizens should work for the improvement of their community. The notion requires active participation through economic contribution and volunteer work to improve life for all citizens.

Praxis of Design Education to the current Digital Culture Student

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Discipline: 

Design Education Strategy

If “Design is shaped by the community and community shapes design” (DEFSA 2013 brief author), then how do we teach design to a culture that is engrossed within the ever-­changing information age, what is the impact of this ethos on the current day designer and design?

Sustaining the Johannesburg fashion design incubators: The role of fashion design education

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Discipline: 

Fashion, Jewellery & Textile Design

Internationally, design incubators have emerged as a result of clustering. These design incubators serve as artist studios, or as design centers providing opportunities for young emerging entrepreneurs to acquire studio workspaces located within a cluster of similar economic activities.

In South Africa,  design incubators, particularly fashion design incubators, have emerged in the Johannesburg Fashion District, situated within the central business district of Johannesburg. Research conducted in 2006 established that there were a number of emerging fashion designers located within the Johannesburg Fashion District design incubators. However, interviews conducted in 2012 revealed that the number of fashion designers positioned within these design incubators had declined.

Design process of novice fashion design students: an educator’s reflective analysis

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Discipline: 

Fashion, Jewellery & Textile Design

This paper centres around a creative design project for first-­‐year fashion design students. This project was informed by (1) the theoretical underpinnings of design thinking, (2) a human-­‐centred approach to design and (3) protocol studies of novice engineering and industrial design students’ approaches to the design process. The design project assumed a design process method that focused on human beings – and their needs – as the driver for fashion design. The aim of adopting such a human-­‐centred method for creative design was three-­‐ fold. Firstly, the design project aimed to create a culture and awareness of human beings and their needs as a driver for fashion design.

Introducing De Jong: reflections upon reconstructing the life and practice of a white English-speaking designer

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Discipline: 

Media & Communications Design

Jacob  Dlamini,  in  his  seminal  text  ‘Native  nostalgia’  (2010),  confides  that  the  first  time  he  heard  the  term ‘economic  sanctions’  used in the township  was in the early 1980s when he woke up one day to discover the local Barclays Bank had been renamed First National Bank (FNB). Notably, Dlamini continues to list “a bottle store and … the biggest news agent in Katlehong” as signifiers of urban life of Katlehong, but only the bank is recalled by brand. At the time, the re‐branding of Barclays engendered a storm of protest in South Africa, both in design circles, and amongst members of the public.

Positioning ‘constructivist’ academic research into project-based pedagogical design studies for 4th year Interior Design Degree programmes

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Discipline: 

Interior & Furniture Design

The  purpose  of  this  paper  is  to  discuss  the  benefits  of  embracing  constructivism  as  a conceptual  basis  for  the practice of teaching and learning in interior design degree programmes;  namely Bachelor of Technology,  and BA Honours offered at many of the institutions in South Africa.
 
Deliberation  is  given  to  using  a  constructivist  approach  to  both  teaching  and  learning, and  as  a  research paradigm to better align the research and practical components of these traditionally vocationally-­orientated, project-based design programmes.   
 

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