2015

7th International DEFSA Conference

Paying it forward: Practicing Scholarship of Engagement in Design Education

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Discipline: 

Design Education Research

This paper reports on a project named Platform 6, which was designed to facilitate teacher development and thereby to develop teachers as scholars. Initiated within the context of Boyer’s Scholarship of Engagement (1991), Platform 6 is a training programme and awareness drive devised for secondary school design teachers on the pedagogy of teaching design thinking and practice.

The exploratory first leg of Platform 6 was limited to a sample of National Senior Certificate (NSC) schools in the Western Cape. Qualitative-exploratory research methodology was employed to gain real world insight about the teaching and learning environment of design teachers in South Africa. It was useful to understand the dynamics of design teaching in grades 10 to 12 in Western Cape schools.

Re-representation: Addressing objectifying media portrayals of women in South Africa

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Discipline: 

Media & Communications Design

Objectification imparts harm to women and sets a detrimental precedent for self-objectification. This is particularly true for young women who are seeking information to assist them in the process of identity construction. Experimental studies indicate that objectification in media causes negative body esteem, an unnecessary drive for thinness, eating disorders and related psychological problems. Globalised media trends emphasise and value women for their physical appearance. These trends de- personalise women, depict them as objects to be gazed at, and style them as decorative, rather than a person with a mind, aptitude, intellect, personality and a ‘voice’.

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.

Exploring design strategies to determine information needs of caregivers

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Discipline: 

Media & Communications Design

In this paper, the authors present information needs required by caregivers in a resource-constrained community during their health-education activities with considerations to design ethics. The role of visuals and technology in facilitating health communication, the need to design “with” users and the benefits thereof are discussed.

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.

Non-maleficence as an ethical guideline to design

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Discipline: 

Media & Communications Design

South Africa finds itself in the difficult position of not having a truly representative voice for design practice. Furthermore, we find ourselves without an advertising regulator with legislative support or legal force with a view on ensuring ethical and non-harmful design practice. The closest we come to such a body, is our advertising self-regulator, namely the Advertising Standards Authority of South Africa (ASASA).

The ethics of Ubuntu and community participation in design

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Discipline: 

Design Education Strategy

In order to produce skilled design graduates schools regularly restructure their curricula to develop knowledge  characterized  by  continuous  advancements  applicable  to  the  ever-changing  design industry. New schools are in demand and a concern arises that these offer little more than specialized software training and do not sufficiently prepare students to become empathetic, thoughtful individuals that may serve the needs of society.  Former president of the International Council of Graphic Design Associations (ICOGRADA), designer and educator Jorge Frascara (2008, sp) confirms this:

Towards human-centered design solutions: Stakeholder participation during brief development

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Discipline: 

Graphic Design & Visual Art

"...the [designer's] task is to design for the individual placed in his or her immediate context." (Buchanan 1998, p. 20)

This  paper  about  a  graphic  design  case  study  discusses  the  positive  impact  of  stakeholder participation during the problem-setting phase of the design process on the designer's ability to reframe the design problem and to conceptualise human-centered design solutions that add value and enrich people's everyday lives.

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.

Mapping Empathy and Ethics in the Design Process

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Discipline: 

Product & Industrial Design

There is no doubt that the role of product designers has changed considerably, not least with the rise of human-centred design. While Papanek’s 1971 “Design for the Real World: Human Ecology and Social Change” seemed radical at the time, his ideas seem entirely at home in the 21st century, including his call to adopt more social responsibility in design. These views are echoed in the contemporary  findings  of  professionals  and  researchers  associated  with  ICSID,  the  International Council of Societies of Industrial Design. The focus has shifted, from the designer as the expert to the user, or community, as the expert in their own environment; and Co-design, Participatory design, and Universal Design are but a few examples of such people-focussed design approaches.

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