"Think about co-design every 15 minutes!"

It was a well timed opportunity to participate in PROUD FORUM in Germany

In fact, I just started the major research regarding on ‘co-design activities in business sector’, so I had an emerging view of co-design at that time. Thus, I headed to Essen with a resolution that I will imbibe all the information from specialists in various fields, like a sponge.

The keynotes in the morning made me to think about future design and the designer’s role in many ways. As considering designers as technicians are still one of the common views upon them, it is an important mission for the designers to inspire and define the new role of design.

During the PROUD workshop, I could learn diverse co-design projects including ‘OO O OH, My BUDA’ and ‘Beyond the Castle’. It was very impressive to know multivarious point of views about co-design through discussions of those projects. By doing so, I also realised how my definition of co-design was limited as I thought of it as a subordinated concept of co-creation, or creative collaboration between designers and other stakeholders.

The conference was an opportunity to think more about my research topic. Indeed, I made an effort to find the connection between my research and the whole conference from keynotes to workshop, perhaps due to the order of my supervisor Leon that ” think about co-design and research every 15 minutes” half in jest. The day at the Red Dot Museum was quite valuable in terms of identifying the characteristic of co-design in business sector and finding its cases. The informal conversations with many co-design experts were enough to meet my demand, but I felt a bit disappointed because the limited time did not allow me to talk with more people in depth. Although my thought about co-design is still imprecise, I can say in conclusion that taking the conference was a thankful and great experience.

Holli Young Sung