Hybrid Territorial-Artificial Systems. Opportunities in Design for Territories.
Authors: Benedetta Terenzi
Abstract: Today we move in changing patterns that need to respond quickly to social, cultural and political stimuli. These models are therefore highly flexible and adaptable. At the same time, the people who act at various levels within them have to be just as changeable and adaptable.The fluidity of the context has exponentially expanded the operational and epistemological boundaries of design, which is no longer design of the aesthetic component of mass production but becomes the design for the development of new behaviours, where products/services/systems are designed not to respond to obvious needs but to identify and anticipate latent needs.The intentionality of the design constitutes the condition of the work of genius, while the satisfaction of the need raises the question of the necessity of the work.Anticipation is increasingly at the heart of urgent contemporary debates, from climate change to the economic crisis. This aspect underlines the anticipatory component to which the project, today more than ever, is called upon to respond. As Bernard Cazes has shown, thinking ahead has always been an essential component of human nature. As societies are less confident that tradition can provide effective guidance for the future, anticipatory practices are coming to the forefront in political, organisational and personal life, but also in design practices. While for Viktor Marcolin designing in the present requires a vision of what the future could and should be, we think of possible futures, the futuribles, according to Bertrand de Jouvenel's famous formula, while according to Berger and the French concept of perspective, it refers to 3 aspects: knowledge about the past and the present; imagination and will. In this context, design action becomes the practical link between the past and the 'possible future', and the material and immaterial artefacts it produces make explicit the possibility of existing at the same time as they are realised.The artefacts, in fact, tell the story of the evolution as individuals, as a society and as a species of the human being. There are no epochs, civilisations, societies or economies that are not characterised by the things they have manufactured, be they material or immaterial.Based on these considerations, the work presented starts from a profound analysis of the territory to which it refers and in which it operates, and turns it into a witness to the past and harbinger of the future, working on the identity and image of places as extensions of the identity and image of the people who live there. In essence, the territorial identity is the conclusion of the flow and evolution of the history and culture that inhabit that place. As Carta states, the territory becomes a 'palimpsest' of signs of the past superimposed on one another, erased and rediscovered.Design is a project activity, whether it is a physical or digital product, a strategy or a new business: the knowledge, technical skills, applications and sometimes ethical contents change, but what unites it all is precisely the design activity aimed at creating something that will be produced, known, understood, judged and bought, because of its ability to meet a need, but whose value will lie in the evocative qualities it will be able to express.The research, therefore, intends to demonstrate how the augmented narrative capacity of digital artefacts can be applied to practices of territorial design, with clear effects on the territory itself, in terms of improving the use of places, well-being, environmental, social and economic sustainability, and in terms of enhancing local resources. Through the description of the peculiarities, invariants and know-how sedimented in the hyperlocal of the places examined, the design process has led to the definition of hybrid territory-centred artefacts that demonstrate how it is also possible to increase the accreditation of contexts with a particular historical, cultural and naturalistic value, such as that of the Umbria region, by investigating the relationship between design practice and the digital technology that feeds products, services and systems.Anholt, S. (2010). Places: identity, image and reputation. Palgrave MacMillan, New York.Candy, L. & Edmonds, E.A. (2000). Enhancing creativity with emerging technologies. Communications of the ACM 43(8), 62-65.Carta, M. (1999). L’armatura culturale del territorio. Il patrimonio culturale come matrice di identità e strumento di sviluppo. FrancoAngeli, Milano.Carta, M. (2012). Città aumentate. Dieci gesti-barriera per il futuro. Il margine, Trento.Marcolin, V. (2017). Design, the Future and the Human Spirit. Design Issues, 23 (3), 4-15Norman. D.A. (2011). Vivere con la complessità. Pearson, Torino.Manzini, E. (2015), Design, When Everybody Designs. An Introduction to Design for Social Innovation. MIT Press, Cambridge-London.André Boy G. (2017) Human-centered design of complex: An experience-based approach. Des. Sci., vol. 3, e8
Keywords: Territory-Centred Design, Hybrid Artificial System, Identity/Image Design, Territorial Innovation
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