Situating societal challenges in an industrial design classroom

Y. Lu, X. Ren, C.A.L. Valk, M.C. den Haan - Wintermans, A.A.J. van Berlo, Peixun Li, Tianming Li, Jianfen Li, Guang Yang

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review

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Designing for societal challenges requires not only traditional design competencies but also knowledge from other
disciplines such as social science and engineering. In particular, designers should have the ability to take entrepreneurial
action, demonstrate design leadership and create responsible designs. Design education has adopted the design studio
approach to creating opportunities for design students to learn and practice design skills. However, scholars often
criticize it due to its lack of scientifically rigorous. This paper discusses a teaching case in an industrial design class where
design students learned to design for a societal challenge through a combination of different educational activities such
as following lecture, participating workshops, conducting field research with end users and stakeholders, and giving
presentations and receiving feedback from industry experts and academic staff. By combining a mixed-perspective, they
got a better understanding of different stakeholders involved, created propositions with all parties in mind and were able
to communicate their ideas clearly. In this way, stakeholders were informed, inspired and empowered to collaborate and
create the intended innovations. By balancing the rationality and creativity in the design class through offering the
theoretical foundations as well as the societal embodiment, this course aimed at equipping future responsible industrial
designers with the desired competencies related to entrepreneurial action and design leadership.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNext Wave: the 21st dmi: Academic Design Management Conference Proceedings
Place of PublicationBoston
PublisherDesign Management Institute
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2018
Event21st DMI: Academic Design Management Conference (ADMC 2018) - London, United Kingdom
Duration: 1 Aug 20182 Aug 2018


Conference21st DMI: Academic Design Management Conference (ADMC 2018)
Abbreviated titleADMC 2018
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address


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