Team: Design for humanity
Brief A: In charge of your body
About No Minor Thing
What can designers do to help combat sexual exploitation of children? That is the question posed by WDCD in collaboration with the Dutch Public Prosecutions Service (OM) and the Ministry of Justice & Security in an invitation-only design challenge.
In No Minor Thing: The What Design Can Do Challenge to Combat Sexual Exploitation of Children, selected design teams had the opportunity to come up with new ways of tackling this issue. Read more on the results of the project and approach of Design for Humanity.
About Private parts
Private parts (Schaamstreken) is an Instagram series in which followers are stimulated to think about the role played by intimacy and sexuality in their lives. The series is aimed at young people aged 10 to 14 years and brings sex education into the online world as experienced by these young people. The Instagram series is about a group of friends and offers weekly insights into the lives of different characters within the group by means of an ‘Instagram takeover’. Every week there will be a new ‘schaam-streek’ : a mystery surrounding sexuality that followers can solve. Schaamstreken holds a mirror up to its followers, allowing us to make young people more aware of their sexual development and make it easier to talk about sexuality.
Read more on this project on the No minor thing platform >
What was it like to participate in No Minor Thing?
“We enjoyed working on the No Minor Thing challenge. Designing for such a serious and urgent problem is always highly motivating. We tried new perspectives several times, shifting the emphasis of our objectives from one time to the next. Completely uprooting something and starting from scratch isn’t easy, but that’s why they call it a challenge!’
‘You need to be able to let go of the issue and listen to your intuition at the right moments. This requires a designer to make a decision; pick something worth trying and give it a go. This allows you to improve your understanding of the situation step by step and sharpen your design accordingly.’
While working on this project, what has caught you by surprise the most?
‘Getting connected to various experts throughout this design process proved very helpful. Designers and experts are there with the same intention: they want to improve or change something. But the very fact that everyone cares so much about the topic can sometimes get in the way of potential solutions. In a design process, it is important to try things out. We found that it is difficult to keep that openness going in a project about such an intense topic.’
What role do you attribute to design when it comes to this type of social issue?
‘As a designer you are trained to be open, think broadly and experiment. Collaboration is very important in that respect. An interdisciplinary team helps keep up a critical thought-process. You need to be able to let go of the issue and listen to your intuition at the right moments. This requires a designer to make a decision; pick something worth trying and give it a go. This allows you to improve your understanding of the situation step by step and sharpen your design accordingly. This way of dealing with social issues ensures that solutions are formulated that will actually affect interactions and behaviour.’
Do you intend to continue the project once the challenge is over?
‘We are definitely planning to continue the project after the challenge. We both believe that anyone can benefit from expanding their erotic intelligence so we see many opportunities in that respect. It would be ideal to start at a young age, especially if we can include themes that will help arm our youth against sexual exploitation.’