DESIS in the Mirror is online
Call for participation: join the NETWORK FOR VISION -  N4V research project!


  • by Anna Meroni
    Dear all, it’s a great pleasure to announce that DESIS has now become a cultural association, within the meaning of Art. 36 Italian Civil Code. The Art.1 of our new Statute affirms that our purpose “is to promote design for social innovation in higher education institutions with design discipline so as to generate useful design knowledge and to create meaningful social changes in collaboration with other stakeholders. The Association pursues its purpose by supporting the scientific research in the field of the design fostering and maintaining the exchange of scientific information and views among the members and with other institutions, exchange of scientists, promotion of young scientists (doctoral students) and use of existing research infrastructures.

  • by Ezio Manzini
    The notion of design for social innovation is frequently considered similar, if not coincident, with the one of social design. In my view, to do that is an error: the two expressions refer to different activities and have very different implications. The problem begins with the double meaning commonly attributed to the adjective “social”. One of them, that is also the one used in the expression design for social innovation, indicates that we refer to something concerning social forms. That is, concerning the way in which a society is built. The other one, instead, indicates the existence of particularly problematic situations (such as extreme poverty, illness or exclusion, and circumstances after catastrophic events) to which both the market and the state fail in finding solutions. In other words, when used in this way, “social” becomes a synonym for “very problematic condition”, which poses (or should pose) the need for urgent intervention, outside normal market or public service modalities. It is with this meaning that this adjective made its entrance into the design debate several decades ago, generating the expression: social design.

Philosophy Talk: Cultures of Resilience: 18th September 2014, Cape Town

Resilience (i.e. system’s capacity to cope with stress and failures without collapsing and learning from the experience) is today a widely used and discussed term. Until now, this has been done considering mainly its technical, economic, functional dimensions. This kind of discussions is important, but is not enough. If resilience must be a characterizing feature of every potential future society, its cultural dimension must be considered too: which cultures are coherent with a resilient society? And, in turn, which cultures can promote a resilient and sustainable society? In particular: how do the meanings of time and future change? And what about the one of development?

DESIS Association general assembly

The next CUMULUS Conference in Johannesburg, on September 22-24 (http://www.cumulusjohannesburg.co.za), will be a very good opportunity to share and align our initiatives.

It will be also the opportunity for the first DESIS general Assembly on September 22 in the afternoon and for the first extensive debate around the on-going projects of the network, described using the new template which aim is to facilitate the emerge of transversal knowledge about what design can do for social innovation.

DESIS in the Mirror is online

DESIS in the Mirror is a project by DESIS Network and IMAGIS research group (Design Dep. – Politecnico di Milano).
Since July 2013 we recorded 13 on-line video-interviews all around the world about the production of moving images in the realm of social innovation (4 artists and filmmakers; 9 DESIS members) in order to:

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Workshop: DESIS Forum and Showcase: Informal, formal and Collaborative (IFC): service design for social innovation in underserved communities

23 September 2014, an initiative back-to-back with the Cumulus Conference Johannesburg

III European School of Social Innovation

The main objective of this year European School of Social Innovation is to offer a plural view about innovation and social innovation in the public sector.
The Summer School offers two points of view about this subject. On one hand, a conceptual perspective on this topic based on different approaches. On the other hand, the presentation of cases of different policies that seek to promote social innovation and innovation initiatives in the field of the public sector.
The purpose of the first day of the Summer School will be to draw an image of the main discourses on innovation and social innovation linked to public sector in the international scene.
The second day wishes to show some interesting cases of public innovation from the Basque Country and Spain. The purpose is to visualize the work done from different organizations in this field in order to raise awareness on the relevance of this subject and inspire actions to implement innovative processes in the public sphere.

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The full series of open lectures are available at DESIS Public & Collaborative initiative website (http://www.desis-clusters.org). 

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