Can you design something so that people stay politically engaged? How would you design a fabric that is made out of waste? What if it was possible to design a spot where people feel safe? Or a game that provides people suffering from Alzheimer game with a channel of communication?
The artist and innovator Daan Rosegaarde says. “You make the things, but the things also make you. . . Good design never stops. You must remain a voluntary prisoner of your own imagination.”
Design thinking is different from analytical thinking and the underlying idea is to build up ideas that embraces big issues (we will explore differences and similarities between analytical and design thinking in another blog post). Design thinking can be part of a way to find solutions to problems associated with social issues, politics, ecology, energy, and health. This approach is also different making something pretty and beautiful to look at. Designing a new cutlery can be an art where different materials are used to create something that is visually attractive. The cutlery should also be designed in a shape and way that it feels good to use them.
Yet you can push the design thinking further. For example, you can design cutlery as part of a new innovation – an incubator that transforms plastic waste into mushroom. Sounds incredible!
The Fungi Mutarium is a prototype to grow fungi around recycled plastic wastes, breaking down and digesting the material as it develops. It may take weeks for the plastic to be fully digested so they are ready to be eaten. To help with the eating of these fungi a moon spoon was designed that helps you scrape the tiny fungi from the pods.
Watch the video below and check out this idea at Livin Studio.
The ultimate goal of design thinking is the discovery of the best outcomes for all the participants. Questions are the core in design thinking, at the Design Academy Eindhoven the focus is on the following questions.
- What do you want?
- What do you like?
- What do you think the world needs?
- What do you make?
- And Why?
Design thinking is a fascinating topic and if you want to read more, Daan has contributed to the book Looks Good Feels Good Is Good – How Social Design Changes Our World.