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Impact and ownership in social design

Last Dutch Design Week (DDW), we joined forces with our partners to organise DDW talks, a new curated talks programme. Together with key figures from the field of design and beyond, we explored a diversity of design disciplines, discussed current affairs, reflected on the past and looked towards the future. On Monday 21 October we joined forces with Afdeling Buitengewone Zaken, Nicky Liebregts and Creative Industries Fund NL and organised DDW talks:
 Social Design.

During DDW Talks: Social Design we investigated the different ways in which designers can strengthen our social fabric, raise awareness for social issues, help create an inclusive society and promote new cultural behaviour. This talks day was curated and established in cooperation with our content partners Afdeling Buitengewone Zaken, Nicky Liebregts, and supported by Creative Industries Fund NL. The talks day was divided into three different blocks and was moderated by Daniëlle Arets.

The emerging social design field got together to share projects, experiences and opinions. We discussed some of the most urgent challenges we face. - Jop Japenga

From conversation pieces to system changes, we first explored a number of best practices in social design by Reframing Studio, MUZUS and Elisa Otañez. We discovered once again how diverse the social design field is, and what it entails. We discussed various questions by means of the Field H@cks case, explained by Rick Nijkamp (Kantar Public), author Nynke Tromp, and Jop Japenga (Afdeling Buitengewone Zaken). When can you consider your social design project to be a success? How can you measure this? And how do you create and embed impact? Also, we discused various approaches for creating ownership and how to design yourself ‘out' of the proces.

Block 1: Best Practices

MUZUS - Neele Kistemaker: As founder of service design studio MUZUS, Neele Kistemaker shared more about their research driven design approach.


Elisa Otañez:
 In 2018, Elisa Otañez graduated as a designer from Design Academy Eindhoven. She uses design as a conversation piece and explained her design vision by means of her graduation design Yellow Spot (DAE, 2018).


Reframing Studio - Matthijs van Dijk:
 As founder of Reframing Studio, Matthijs talked about the project 'Redesigning the Psychiatry'. By means of this case he explained how the studio explores, tackles and solves problems at system level.


Block 2: Panel discussion on 'Impact'

During this panel discussion, the panel shared their expertise and spoke about the impact of social design in relation to the Field Hacks Open Call by Baltan Laboratories

Kantar - Rick Nijkamp: As part of the Kantar team, Rick Nijkamp researces behavioural change by means of qualitative and quantitative research. 

TU Delft - Nynke Tromp: Nynke Tromp works as an Assistant Professor Social Design & Behaviour Change at the department of Industrial Design, Delft University of Technology. Together with her colleague Paul Hekkert, she wrote the book Designing for Society

Afdeling Buitengewone Zaken - Jop Japenga: Jop Japenga is Research Director at design studio Afdeling Buitengewone Zaken. He shared his experience of the project Field H@cks in Lesbos (Greece), which was also the case study of this panel discussion.

Studio Julia Veldman C - Julia Veldman: Julia Veldman graduated from Design Academy Eindhoven in 2011 and has worked as a visual storyteller ever since. 

Block 3: Ownership


During the final part of the talks day, we were part of an on stage dialogue about ownership in relation to social design. 

Studio Nicky Liebregts - Nicky Liebregts: As a social designer Nicky translates difficult subjects into accessible experiences. She has her own design studio called Studio Nicky Liebregts. She elaborated on 'Klusplus', a project in collaboration with social designer Manon van Hoeckel.


Morgenmakers - Tove Elfferich: Tove Elfferich is part of social design studio Morgenmakers and shared her experience of the project StratumWerkt.

Stay up to date with the social design field?

You can now! As a result of DDW talks: Social Design and the in-depth evening programme, it became clear that there is a great need within the sector to continue to reflect on the field. The collaboration for the talks day proved successful and so it happened. Together, Afdeling Buitengewone Zaken and Nicky Liebregts formed the Social Design Showdown platform. The initiative was subsidised by the Creative Industries Fund NL.