Abstract

From the act of ordinary humans in shaping the world around them, to a structuralized professional practice, the perception and meaning of design has evolved. The institutional and closed definition of design in the years since the industrial revolution has failed to recognize the ingenious designs that come from the common man, the everyday designer. These solutions are contextual, sustainable and affordable and a necessity, especially for developing countries. This paper on the democratization of design seeks to recognize the ingenuity of this ‘diffuse’ or non-expert design and present cases of a few successful and path breaking innovations from the grassroots of India. It further explores the idea of a democratized design world where everyone would design. It would not mean de- professionalizing design, rather a new role for the designer as a facilitator to create this new reality of a participative co-design process. As we increasingly take cognizance of the impact of design in domains like businesses, organizations and even governance we are already on our way to create a pluriverse of design which creates value through a collective design capacity.

Keywords

participative design; ingenious innovation; diffuse design; everyday designer

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License

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Jun 4th, 12:00 AM

Democratization of Design

From the act of ordinary humans in shaping the world around them, to a structuralized professional practice, the perception and meaning of design has evolved. The institutional and closed definition of design in the years since the industrial revolution has failed to recognize the ingenious designs that come from the common man, the everyday designer. These solutions are contextual, sustainable and affordable and a necessity, especially for developing countries. This paper on the democratization of design seeks to recognize the ingenuity of this ‘diffuse’ or non-expert design and present cases of a few successful and path breaking innovations from the grassroots of India. It further explores the idea of a democratized design world where everyone would design. It would not mean de- professionalizing design, rather a new role for the designer as a facilitator to create this new reality of a participative co-design process. As we increasingly take cognizance of the impact of design in domains like businesses, organizations and even governance we are already on our way to create a pluriverse of design which creates value through a collective design capacity.

 

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