Designers help social enterprise to attack alcoholism through a retail outlet for alcohol

Selling alcohol to reduce harmful drinking

27 Mar 2015 Published in Health by Bas van Lier

From a collaboration set up by the British Design Council between social enterprise Unlimited Potential and Scottish design agency Snook, the city of Salford is about to see a first: a for-profit local retail outlet selling alcohol in a way that must reduce harmful drinking. The initial idea was to engage problem drinkers not yet classified ‘alcoholic’ in activities designed to address loneliness, boredom and social isolation, three important triggers for problem drinking. “We like to focus on social innovation – exploring ways of tackling social problems which are different from the norm – and had an idea for a […] (...)

Professor Charles Spence will talk at WDCD2015 about design of multisensory foods and products

‘Sound is the forgotton flavour sense’

26 Mar 2015 Published in Senses by Billy Nolan

‘I really think that sound is the forgotten flavour sense. It really does play a much bigger role than many chefs and any of us realize,’ says Oxford Professor Charles Spence, who will surprise us with more insights like this at WDCD2015 on 21 & 22 May. (...)

UNHCR orders 10.000 Better Shelters that were jointly developed with IKEA Foundation

Better Shelter: IKEA’s refugee housing solution

25 Mar 2015 Published in Aid by Bas van Lier

Better Shelter, IKEA Foundation’s flat pack solution for a new, safer and more durable shelter for refugee families, is to be taken into production. After tests in the field and improvements made in collaboration with 40 refugee families, UNHCR decided to order 10.000 of the easy to assemble temporary shelters. The news was announced yesterday in Dubai. For several years, the IKEA Foundation, UNHCR and a group of Swedish designers have worked together to develop a new kind of temporary shelter that will provide refugees with safety, dignity and a better place to call home. The prototype has been tested […] (...)

What Design Can Do 21 &22 May 2015 Stadsschouwburg Amsterdam

‘Alimentario’ in Museu da Cidade in São Paulo is a poetic story on Brazilian culinary culture

Letter from Brazil: a culinary portrait

24 Mar 2015 Published in Culture by Femke van Gemert

The very intelligible exhibition ‘Alimentario’ at the Museu da Cidade in São Paulo shows how the universe of foods and the culinary has contributed to shape the face of Brazil today. The exhibition can only be seen till the end of this week, but we discuss it here anyhow, because it helped us to understand the deep relationship of the Brazilians with their food and the huge cultural value that it carries for them. In the OCA pavilion, an amazing UFO-shaped building that was designed by Oscar Niemeyer in 1951, Alimentario is not a boring, linear history lesson. Yes there are […] (...)

Architect SInclair to present his new Department of Small Works

Cameron Sinclair back on WDCD stage

23 Mar 2015 Published in Aid by Bas van Lier

‘Architecture is where life happens,’ Cameron Sinclair said in 2012 in an inspiring talk that overwhelmed the WDCD audience. Telling the story of Architecture for Humanity, Sinclair incited the audience to ‘design like you give a damn’. Last Friday, during the WDCD2015 kick-off event, the news was announced that Sinclair will be back on the WDCD stage, this time to talk about his new organization, the Department of Small Works. Small Works is an open source design collaborative that is advising non-profits and foundations on implementing building solutions in the field. The organization works in areas of systemic poverty and […] (...)

Venezuelan architect Alejandro Haiek (LAB.PRO.FAB.) uses unique bottom-up approach in his designs

Spaceship for sports in the favela

20 Mar 2015 Published in City by Marit Turk

In the hills of Caracas, Venezuela Complex Carbonell looks like a spaceship. The center for sports and culture connects not only the people, but also the homes of the local community. Its metallic look blends into the looks of the favelas. The building is 500 square meters spread over three levels. On the ground floor a bakery and coffee place have opened; the second floor contains space for gatherings with a capability for over 200 people; the third floor is for sports with facilities for basketball, ping pong and more. (...)

The themes of WDCD2015: Cultural consciousness, humanity, urban issues, and the senses

Here’s what we will be talking about at WDCD

19 Mar 2015 Published in WDCD by editor

Every year WDCD chooses several topics to discuss during the event in May. This year’s programme is grouped around the themes cultural consciousness, humanity, urban issues and the senses. More details are found on the event site, but here’re the outlines. (...)

Craft and design journalist Borges takes us to A Casa Museum for the Brazilian Object

Letter from Brazil: meeting with Adélia Borges

18 Mar 2015 Published in Culture by Femke van Gemert

Last week on a trip to Brazil I met with Adélia Borges, the curator and journalist who spoke at the very first WDCD in 2011. It was a great pleasure seeing her again and she took me to the interesting new A Casa Museum for the Brazilian Object that Trip Advisor rates as excellent. (...)

Online exhibition celebrates the disappearing culture of neon signs

When Hong Kong’s prosperity depended on design

17 Mar 2015 Published in City by editor

There was a saying that Hong Kong’s prosperity depended on design. Design in this context meant neon signs. This beautiful, nostalgic film on the dying craft of making such signs is part of an online exhibition celebrating Hong Kong’s neon signs. (...)

Superuse Studios’ head of design will present his ideas at WDCD2015

Césare Peeren turns waste into beauty

16 Mar 2015 Published in Recycling by Bas van Lier

‘I think designing as such is a little absurd. I don’t believe in one form being the best, and form is never my starting point,’ architect Césare Peeren once said. Instead Peeren starts each project by searching the surroundings for waste materials that could be of use in the design. Resulting in a coffee counter made of old washing machine fronts, a playground made of discarded wind turbine blades or a shoe store interior made of redundant windshields. Peeren will speak at WDCD2015. ‘All the resources we’ve been digging up using the abundance of oil in the past 150 years, […] (...)