Fostering creativity to Design Students as a problem-solving process for climate change

Open Access
Conference Proceedings
Authors: Leonardo Springer

Abstract: According to the UN, creativity is a crucial factor to ensure a better world and recognized as a fundamental tool to further develop other abilities and problem-solving skills. Nevertheless, this requires individual curiosity, an open-mind, imagination, problem solving skills and a willingness to take action. Human activity is causing planetary climate change, thus causing destruction, and generating negative consequences for mankind. The explored question is whether creativity can address climate change issues, as regards to innovation, and consequently foster a preferred outcome. This approach provided insights on how students address a given challenge, using creativity and design innovation processes to address issues and create a viable outcome.The UN general secretary acknowledged that education encourages people to change attitudes and behaviours, helping them make informed decisions. This requires equity, inclusion, and relevance, towards the development of prosperous societies inhabiting a healthy planet. Whatever society invests on education, it will return onto society itself. In a classroom, young people can be taught the impact of global warming and learn how to adapt to climate change. Education empowers all people, but especially motivates the young to act. (Guterres, 2022).Designers are at the forefront of those able, and committed, to accomplish change. In addition, design education has significant importance addressing not only design issues but also climate change issues, fostering a viable sustainable change, towards the development of sustainable products and services. This, nonetheless, requires adaptation, resilience, and clear communication to a specific audience conveying a desired message. Design needs to incorporate sustainable practices, focusing on product life cycle, energy consumption, standardization, maintenance, repair, overhaul, reuse, and easy recycling. Thus, reducing waste and using the limited planetary resources.Design students learn by observing, listening, and mostly by doing, encouraged with good examples, hands-on experience, and supported with constructive feed-back. Active teaching methodologies require teachers to act as mediators, encouraging and challenging students to research and acquire knowledge thought applied practice, whereas individually or in group learning, constructing knowledge, exploring, in a process of creation, connection, and transformation.Mitigation of climate change requires global and local action, not only concerning greenhouse gases and natural resources management, but especially regarding complex social behaviours that require a shift towards sustainability.This exploratory research brings insight on higher education design students addressing changes and its implications with Problem Based Learning (PBL) methodologies, addressing design consequences, using creativity as a transformation tool in an interdisciplinary process in a fast-changing world that requires a paradigm shift.

Keywords: Creativity, education, sustainable development goals, design, Innovation

DOI: 10.54941/ahfe1003300

Cite this paper: