Pages on Arts and Design Issue #13: Design for Territories (June 2016)

Website: Design for Territories Editors: Marina Parente, Carla Sedini Deadline for submission: 6 June 2016 The editors invite contributi...

Website: Design for Territories
Editors: Marina Parente, Carla Sedini
Deadline for submission: 6 June 2016

The editors invite contributions to the issue no.13 of PAD - Pages on Arts and Design- online journal (to be released in September 2016) that will be focused on the Design for Territories.

Design approaches, competences and methodologies have a significant impact and value in the process of analysis, strategic planning and enhancement of places. Design already has its own tradition on this matter and deals with places in different phases of the research cycle.

  1. Discover and envision. This step is focus on the identification of strategies and on methodologies to gain knowledge about a place (from the neighborhood to the national level) and then analyze this data in order to start envisioning the possibilities for involvement. This knowledge is comprised both of tangible and intangible resources, such as physical monuments or personal and collective stories and memories, all of which can be gathered both online or offline.
  2. Empower. This is a pivotal moment for the Design’s research focused on places. Design’s goal is to uniformly connect all local activities carried out in order to empower institutions, citizens and enterprises to know, manage and take part in the culture of a specific place.
  3. Communicate. Another important role that Design can play is establishing more efficient ways of communicating knowledge gathered about a place: both within the area of specific study and beyond, in meaningful way according to the given purpose of the research.
  4. Reinvent. In this phase, specific activities take place, such as integrating service design for tourism, culture or welfare; strategic design for place and sense making, place branding or competitive position attainment; policy design for local and sustainable development; etc.

Looking at these premises it is evident that a Design for Territories already exists. However, the Research Center D4T-Design for Territories, of the Politecnico di Milano - Design Department, aims to create an international network to share and discuss the different research activities and practices focused on places. In addition to that, D4T wants to legitimize the use of “territorial” as an adjective to identify activities and characteristics, which have to do with places and geographical areas.

In the view of D4T a territory corresponds to an administrative or jurisdictional entity, a populated areas and a place for social interactions.

As stated before design practices, which closely examine territorial issues, have been already established; however, this call objectives are for investigating and collecting a more in-depth and theoretical vision for this matter. We think that this is the ideal time to develop some theoretical overview and some deeper analysis, which go further than a simple collection of existing case studies. Another very ambitious goal of this call is to imagine the future of this very wide discipline. We assisted to the transition from a design without a place to a design in the place and, ultimately, to a design for the place. What can be next level of relationship, study, discover and involvement of design for places and territories? Since we are coming from a Mediterranean point-of-view, we wonder what are other countries’ interpretations and inferred value about this issue?

In order to answer to these very broad questions, we propose three potential courses of action. Each track addresses crucial dichotomies that we have observed in the field of Design for Territories.

Track_1: Theories and Practices
The objective of this track is reasoning on the consolidation of a theoretical basis in light of the research and teaching experiences. In recent years at the Design Department of the Politecnico di Milano we have been working with experimental strategies of action-research, which involves actively operating within territories, and then deriving theoretical reasoning from these experiences. Through this track we want to look at other experiences of theories and practices mix, in order to gain insight to implement research methodologies and approaches in developing a (new) theoretical base.

Track_2: Tangible and Intangible
The objective of this track is an assessment of both tangible and intangible characteristics of: a place and its resources, Design actions and its tools, communication and its strategies.

Track_3: Competition and Collaboration
The objective of this track is surpass both a dualistic vision of the strategies that can be put in place by cities, regions or even nations and also going beyond the already well known coopetition strategies, that are based on a cooperative competition. We welcome input regarding policies of territorial self-determination; transparency and accessibility of places and their resources; preferred methods for mediation or implementation of decided actions, either on or offline, among which the so-called enabling platforms; policies oriented to the enhancement of place identity.

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The Trouble with Normal...: Pages on Arts and Design Issue #13: Design for Territories (June 2016)
Pages on Arts and Design Issue #13: Design for Territories (June 2016)
The Trouble with Normal...
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