Inside the head of a designer

Designing Dublin

Designing for Dublin

This project, Design for Dublin, only came to my attention yesterday through the ‘Designing for the public sector’ group on Wenovski.

Brian Gough, a member of the team says,

“Designing Dublin was a pilot project that ran in conjunction with Dublin City council. For three very intense months, a team of 17 of us worked on a project called finding the hidden potential of place.

The focus of this project was Clongriffin, an unfinished building development in Dublin north. Leading the team was Vannesa Ahuactzin, whose background includes working with Bruce Mau on the project Massive Change. Through her, we were exposed to various tools normally associated with Design Thinking.”

Engaging Individuals in a design process

It’s worth having a good look through their project blog from start to finish to see how the project progressed.  The idea was to grow a culture of learning, that could help ‘ provide a new generation of entrepreneurs with the tools to design inventive solutions to the new global challenges and encourage people to understand how they can contribute purposefully to the future of their country and to the world in the 21st Century.

Their website says,

“We believe that there is no perfect answer when defining this new learning system. We have decided to begin anywhere by running the Designing Dublin: Learning to Learn pilot. Our intention is to test Design Thinking as a tool to empower learning that generates solutions through proposals, ideation, prototyping, testing and iteration.”

The Irish times wrote an interesting take on it, and it’s probably what I find most interesting about the project is that the team was made up of half council members and half citizens,

“The outcome was Designing Dublin: learning to learn , a pilot project to show how it’s possible to bring together people from different backgrounds to work together intensively for three months – an experience that would be transformational for them and “could transform this country in the next five years”

It links up with some of the work I’ve been doing with getgoglasgow.  We’ve been working in a community for the last couple of months to create sustainable solutions which allow people to grow and develop ideas themselves, meaning our solutions will last long into the future.  In this way, we have become the designers of tools.  One of the groups work is a project called listen up (2.36 into video) which is to create a set of tools allowing residents to have a better say in how funds are spent on new developments for their area;

“This specific Wyndford project will be used to prototype tools that involve the community in the co-creation process for the old school-site regeneration, to which a possible £3 million development fund will be allocated in April 2010. Following on from Wyndford, the tools will be reviewed and made available on an online platform that facilitates collaboration in further community consultation schemes, empowering communities to have a say in how their taxes are spent.”

You can find out more about the work we’ve been doing from our blog or follow us on twitter