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PhD Colloquium 2015

A2 Sverre Fehn

(All presentations are 15 minutes, followed by 25 minutes of questions/discussion)

9:00 – 9:10 Start / welcome

Session 01

9:10 – 9:50 Manuela Aguirre (Design) Can service prototyping from the frontlines support policymaking processes?

9:50 – 10:30 Sareh Saeidi (Architecture) Creating heterogeneous atmospheres through context-specificity and climatic design in architecture

10:30 – 11:00 Break

Session 02

11:00 – 11:40 Nina Lysbakken (Design) The Visual Design of Social Interfaces: How Typography and Layout Can Affect Public Voices and Online Dialogue

11:40 – 12:20 William Kempton (Design) Investigating approaches to New Product Development for Additive Manufacturing (through interviewing)

12:20 – 14:00 Lunch

Session 03

14:00 – 14:40 Jun Ma (Urbanism and Landscape) Urbanisation in Yinjiang

14:40 – 15:20 Mathilde Sprovin (Form, Theory and History) The Drawing School in Christiania (Oslo) and the missing architecture students: An insight into the world of the archives

15:20 – 16:00 Iver Tangen Stensrud (Form, Theory and History) Topographies of print in nineteenth-century Christiania

Manuela Aguirre Can service prototyping from the frontlines support policymaking processes?

In the last three years, more than twenty new government innovation labs have emerged, most with service design as a central capacity. These labs are seen as a means to improve quality of life, reduce inequalities and work more effectively with reduced public budgets. However, the complexity that the policy and public service landscapes entail requires equipping designers with a new set of tools, skills and principles.

New tools from the area of Systems Oriented Design allow designers to deal with extreme complexity, leveraging visual and systems thinking techniques. New skills adapted from social anthropology and social policy allow designers to be more rigorous in their research and prototyping designs.  Finally, designers need strong ethical principles to evaluate new ideas and interventions when designing for the common good.

Engaging in research-by-design, I embedded myself in a public service innovation lab that has a unique point of departure. Rather than establishing itself within central government, it uses a Grounded Change approach (Schulman et. al. 2014) by working at the frontlines - at the intersection between citizens and service providers. Traditionally in the public sector, the design and delivery functions are separate.  Policymakers design and municipalities and public organizations deliver, disconnecting policy from people’s real context with weak feedback loops between design and implementation.

Through a case study, the question explored was: can strengthening the design capacity within citizens and the people delivering public services improve outcomes for all parties involved?  The results of a six-month long design capacity building program showed that Grounded Change is promising - as radical new services were co-designed and prototyped in context by service staff with end users. The ongoing challenge is how to connect this approach to the support structures that will enable these new services to continue developing and support policymaking processes.

Sareh Saeidi Creating heterogeneous atmospheres through context-specificity and climatic design in architecture

Today, many architectures have lost their contextual integrated character and turned into representational entities, independent from their local settings in which they exist. These entities employ an object-oriented approach towards architecture that is autonomous, and indifferent to its cultural and climatic environment. In such cases, architecture turns into power-oriented objects of individual or functional expression. And as Kengo Kuma states, these type of architecture could be argued in being the separator of inside and outside: “… making architecture into an object means distinguishing between its inside and outside and erecting a mass called inside in the midst of an outside” (Kuma, 2008).

This experimental project tries to redefine the boundaries of performative envelopes through providing diverse atmospheric qualities attuned by environmental factors and adaptive approaches in climatic design. The experiment aims at examining ways of integrating Multiple Envelope and Extended Threshold design approaches –mapped out as part of this research– to generate operative atmospheres (Leatherbarrow, 2009). This will be implemented by addressing daylight –as the environmental input– in targeting the sensibilities and operations of envelope performances within the built space. By doing so, the research constructs its argument that spatial qualities and meanings of the architectural atmospheres are bound to their operational elements. The operational elements of this project are directly affected by degrees of enclosure and light penetration through spatial and material organizations. Alongside this, the research examines specific qualities of various patterns of inhabitation and use that arise impulsively in the space.

This experimental design process will establish a working method by which the research will pursue further investigations along with developing the method further. The research examines the degree of successful operation of the design intents in an iterative process by reflective thinking and analysis. The data for analysis is collected through various tools of investigation such as Arduino weather stations, computational simulation and analysis, and photometric studies. It should be noted that the conceptual approach of the research in envelope classification is not only to map out conceptual approaches on the built envelopes, but also to make these approaches operational for the research process. In doing so, the research investigate ways by which the resilience and applicability of the research’s chosen approach can be tested through envisioning the existing practices in a new perspective.

Nina Lysbakken The Visual Design of Social Interfaces: How Typography and Layout Can Affect Public Voices and Online Dialogue

In this presentation, I argue that it is important to study social interfaces from a communication design perspective, in order to understand how the visual design shapes meaning in such interfaces. I also argue that the visual-designed choices depend of context, and that the meaning the design conveys is socially situated and inseparable from the terms of its production. This communication design perspective on social interfaces lacks in the emerging field of research on social interfaces, and is both overlapping and complementary to HCI-research focused on functions and use quality. In order to understand the materiality and communicative implications of such interfaces, I have deconstructed and analyzed the graphic design features 1) layout and 2) typography of the social interface through a social semiotic framework. Further I have compared these to the layout and typography of similar interfaces, such as particular online magazines, blogs and newspapers. Through the analysis of, we found that the way in which visual features such as typography and layout are applied in certain interfaces can change the meaning communicated, depending on the context. Such an understanding of interfaces is particularly relevant in the field of social design, where designers are increasingly called upon to design social interfaces that promote new voices in public debate.

William Kempton Case study: Investigating approaches to New Product Development for Additive manufacturing ( through interviewing)

The study seeks to investigate various approaches to developing consumer products for Additive Manufacturing.

New product Development (NDP) can be described as the collective process of conceptualising, developing and marketing of new products. With the availablitity of manufacturing methods such as Additive Manufacturing (AM), NPD processes are subject to change as new production methods make small-scale production feasible. This may open up for such things as products-on-demand, that are either customisable or enhanced to individual needs.

The study looks into several design cases using the qualitative interview as a method of research. The interview objects are designers who have performed specific design cases where AM considered a core method of production.

The research does not intend to a output a specific set of approaches to Designing for Additive Manufacturing.  Rather, it aims to present reflections that come out of the individual cases.

Jun Ma Urbanisation in Yinjiang

By looking into the urbanization process in Yinjiang for the past decades (especially the last 15 years), this article discusses the ongoing transformations happening at a township and village level through the lens of housing and planning.

Housing, which focuses on the regeneration within the territory of the town municipality, includes both of the newly built housing types initiated by local government and the real estate property developments driven by private capitals. The new housing types mentioned above refer to new villages that are five to six stories high to replace the existing natural villages, new residence built to accommodate local villagers who are over 23 years old but not able to afford an individual housing unit, and caring centers for elder villagers. These are government led projects aiming to level up housing standards of local residents. On the other hand are the commercial projects, their original strategy and actual sale conditions are also compared to illustrate the willingness or ability of the locals to buy so that the change of the structure of local housing system brought by real estate projects is highlighted.

Yinjiang is at the same time an experimental spot for the coordination of different types of planning, such as strategy planning, spatial planning and land planning. The first daft of a combined planning will come out soon and will provide necessary empirical material for this research.

Mathilde Sprovin The Drawing school in Christiania (Oslo) and the missing architecture students – an insight into the world of the archives

The Drawing school in Christiania was grounded in 1818. For the founders and the teachers at the school the intension was to create a Norwegian art academy. The school never achieved this status, but in the 19th century the Drawing school was the only public offer for education of trades men, artists and architects in Norway.

The architecture students at the Drawing school are the topic of my thesis, and the project will investigate the architecture tutorial, the schools position in the Norwegian public, and its significance for Norwegian architecture in the century. In the search for the education of the architecture students at the school I have formed some research questions:

Who were the students? Who were their teachers? In which classes were the architecture students trained? How was the training organized?

A part of my work is to trace the architecture students in the archive material preserved by the school, in the more general historiography and architects biography. But the archive material is extensive, and in my work and search of answers I have to find a way of dealing with the material, a strategy that increases the chances of finding relevant information, and don´t get lost in details which are beyond the scope of my project.

My presentation addresses the complexity of working with literature and primary sources as the schools archive and archives by the ministry of education. This work constitutes the core of my ongoing research into the history of the Drawing school of Christiania.

Iver Tangen Stensrud Topographies of print in nineteenth-century Christiania

From the early nineteenth century, a national public sphere was beginning to develop in Norway. One of the most important features in this development was the proliferation of printed books, newspapers and periodicals. From the 1830s, printers’ shops, publishers, bookstores and libraries were increasingly becoming an important part of the political and cultural life the Norwegian capital as well as becoming a prominent feature of the physical appearance of the city.

I argue that considering the specific places where print was sold and produced and their place in the urban topography provides us with a tangible understanding of the development of the public sphere in the nineteenth century. The public sphere often thought of as an abstract entity that suddenly appears sometime in the late-eighteenth or early nineteenth century. My aim is to place this public sphere back into its specific urban contexts, by producing a topography of print for nineteenth-century Christiania. Where were printers, publishers and booksellers located in relation to political, cultural, and economic institutions? Which parts of the city produced what kinds of print? Can we find relations with developments in the city and the location of printers, booksellers and publishers, and what did these places actually look like?

Using tax reports and address books, I map printers and booksellers in the city from the 1830s to about 1870. To get a sense of the places were print was produced and sold, I use what is available. Scattered accounts and histories of printers and booksellers, in addition to diary accounts, letters and travelogues can provide us not only with a more tangible understanding of the development of an urban public sphere, but also new ways of seeing urban life in nineteenth-century Christiania.

Earlier Event: November 24
Later Event: November 26